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New Partnerships in the Florida Keys Strengthen Early Warnings of Harmful Algal Blooms

A grant from the Ocean Reef Conservation Association (ORCA) to the Marine Resources Development Foundation enabled expansion of NOAA’s Phytoplankton Monitoring Network (PMN) monitoring sites in the Florida Keys. The Marine Resources Development Foundation has been an active volunteer group with PMN since 2012. With this ORCA grant and technical guidance from PMN, the Marine Resources […]

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Phytoplankton Monitoring Network Highlighted during National Volunteer Week

Public participation in scientific research is a growing trend. Citizen science, as it is called, typically involves data collection by members of the public who pass their information along to researchers trying to answer real-world questions. In support of National Volunteer Week (April 12–18), the National Ocean Service ran a social media campaign this week highlighting […]

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Alaskan Tribal Communities Trained for Testing Paralytic Shellfish Toxins

Last October, two cases of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) were confirmed  after butter clams containing PSP toxins were harvested for personal consumption from a beach near Sitka, Alaska. Elevated PSP levels have prompted the state to close most southeast Alaska commercial shellfishery areas. However, recreational and subsistence shellfishers in the region remain at risk to […]

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NCCOS and “Phytofinders” Identify and Respond to Red Tide Event in North Carolina

Students from First Flight High School participating as “Phytofinders” for the NCCOS Phytoplankton Monitoring Network (PMN) identified the non-toxic, single-celled organism Mesodinium rubrum as the cause of a red tide bloom near Bodie and Pea Island, North Carolina. The bloom was first reported on October 27, 2014 to NOAA though the NCCOS Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research (CSCOR) harmful […]

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Phytoplankton Monitoring Network Volunteers in Georgia Trained in Marine Debris Reporting

The NCCOS Phytoplankton Monitoring Network (PMN) program recently trained volunteers from Georgia in harmful algal bloom and marine debris monitoring. Volunteers from Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary, Burton 4-H, and the University of Georgia’s Marine Extension Service received instruction on target phytoplankton species for change detection, as well as how to identify microplastics in phytoplankton […]

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Automated Sensor Provides Texas with Early Warning of Red Tide

Last week, an NCCOS-funded sensor installed on a Port Aransas pier alerted Texas agencies to rising concentrations of Karenia brevis, the marine dinoflagellate that causes red tides. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the Texas Department of State Health Services, and other interested managers received a two-week early warning that a red tide bloom was […]

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New Online Community Created to Improve National HAB Response

NCCOS and the U.S. National Office for HABs established a new listserv to address diarrhetic shellfish poisoning. This emerging harmful algal bloom (HAB) issue has caused shellfish harvesting closures in Washington and Texas, human illness in Washington, and threatens other states. The online community of researchers; national, state, local, and tribal officials and public health […]

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Congress Reauthorizes National Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Legislation

On June 17, 2014, Congress passed a reauthorization of the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act (HABHRCA)—legislation last reauthorized in 2004. HABHRCA is critical for protecting the public from these environmental events, as well as furthering NOAA’s goals to maintain healthy oceans and build resilient coastal communities and economies. In a roll call […]

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