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Assessing Emerging Algal Toxin Threat in Washington State Waters

In early June 2016, NOAA and Washington State partners begin a four-month long effort to monitor shellfish and water every week at six locations around Puget Sound and on the Pacific coast. The team plans to measure concentrations of marine algae and their associated lipophilic (fat soluble) toxins, which can accumulate in shellfish and cause […]

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Real-time HAB and Toxin Sensors Deployed in Pacific Northwest

An environmental sample processor (ESP) was deployed on May 23 to monitor for harmful algal blooms (HABs) and their toxins off the coast of La Push, Washington in the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary, by scientists with NOAA and the University of Washington. This is the first time the ESP, essentially a ‘lab in a […]

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Risk of Shellfish Toxicity Predicted by Temperature and Salinity

A new study shows that water temperature and salinity can indicate the likely occurrence of toxic Alexandrium blooms (a type of harmful algae) in the U. S. Pacific Northwest. As shellfish become contaminated with the toxins produced by these harmful algal blooms (HABs), researchers and shellfish managers can use these findings to predict shellfish toxicity, which causes illness or even […]

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NCCOS Projects at the Forefront of Numerical Estuarine Modeling

Scientists’ use of simulation models has increased during the past several decades as a widely accepted tool for investigations into estuarine dynamics. A recently published scientific review paper, authored by NCCOS-sponsored scientists, outlines the progress and accomplishments of coupled hydrodynamic-ecological estuarine modeling. Many NCCOS-sponsored foundational modeling studies are featured in the review paper. Findings show that while most […]

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2016 Ocean Sciences Meeting Showcases NCCOS Research

The 2016 Ocean Sciences Meeting this past winter featured the research of NCCOS scientists and sponsored principal investigators. Topics included ocean acidification, hypoxia, blue carbon, and harmful algal blooms. NCCOS scientists and sponsored researchers gave 24 oral and poster presentations and co-chaired six special sessions. The biennial Ocean Sciences Meeting consists of a diverse program covering […]

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Robotic Environmental Sample Processor Conserves Samples for HAB Species Identification

Sponsored researchers with the NCCOS ECOHAB project looking at regional harmful algal bloom “hotspots” off coastal California are testing the feasibility of using a robotic water quality and toxin detection device, the Environmental Sample Processor or ESP, to collect the glass cells (silicon frustules) of the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia for species identification and assessing geographic distribution. Certain species […]

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Envisioning a Plankton Imaging Network to Address Gulf of Mexico Coastal Management Needs

In mid-January, 2016, NCCOS funded investigators from Texas A&M University and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution convened a group of scientists and managers to produce a first-ever consensus vision for a network of real-time, continuous plankton imaging sensors or Imaging FlowCytobots (IFCB) in the Gulf of Mexico. The envisioned network will expand a harmful algal […]

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California Ocean Protection Council Briefed on Harmful Algal Bloom Impacts

At a recent meeting of the California Ocean Protection Council (OPC), a panel of researchers and managers briefed the council on the Summer 2015 West Coast harmful algal bloom (HAB) event and other troubling changing ocean conditions. The presentation highlighted the value of past and current NCCOS competitive HAB programs. These program investments in modeling, monitoring, observing and […]

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