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Tiny yet Toxic: Dinoflagellate Karlodinium veneficum

Relatively unknown and taxonomically confusing until the last few decades, the tiny but toxic dinoflagellate, Karlodinium veneficum, can produce dense blooms and fish-killing toxins. K. veneficum is a small chlorophyll-containing dinoflagellate that produces a suite of potent toxic compounds known as karlotoxins which kill fish as well as other organisms. K. veneficum has a mixed nutritional mode […]

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Annual Lecture Informs Long Island Citizens of Water Quality Threats

Over the last century, Long Island coastal bays, once home to some of the nation’s most productive shellfisheries, have faced a series of environmental threats. The primary culprit appears to be excess nitrogen entering the waters—from fertilizer runoff to septic system effluent—that fuels excessive algal growth, reducing water quality and degrading bay ecosystems. These algal […]

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Enhanced Monitoring Saved Puget Sound Net Pen Salmon Threatened by Extreme Harmful Algal Bloom

In June, the straits, bays and islands of Puget Sound experienced some of the most extensive harmful algal blooms (HABs) in recent memory, including at least five potential toxin producers. Blooms of Heterosigma akashiwo, which causes massive fish kills, were widespread and threatened the salmon net pen mariculture industry. Enhanced HAB monitoring in the area led […]

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Forensic Genomics Used to Identify Causes of Ocean Mass Mortality Events

Fish and invertebrate mass mortality events are increasing in coastal zones worldwide, but in many cases it can be difficult to pinpoint the cause of death. Toxic spills, hypoxia (low dissolved oxygen), disease outbreaks, and toxin-producing harmful algal blooms possibly cause these events, but it is critical from a management and response perspective to accurately […]

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NCCOS Identifies Cause of Large Fish Kills in North Carolina Estuaries

In recent years, North Carolina estuaries have experienced large fish kills often associated with rains and moderate temperatures. Most of the dead fish have exhibited large, open skin ulcers. Scientists at NCCOS analyzed the ulcerated fish collected by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR) and the Neuse Riverkeeper Foundation using molecular assays […]

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