Published: June 16th, 2015 at 2:47 am ET
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Gov’t: “This is unprecedented in extent and magnitude”… toxic bloom may stretch from Calif. to Alaska — Largest event ever recorded? — Official: “It’s new territory… we’ve never had to close essentially half our coast” — Fish washing up “extremely poisonous” — “Serious concern for coastal communities”

NOAA Fisheries (pdf), Jun 15, 2015 (emphasis added): NOAA Fisheries mobilizes to gauge unprecedented West Coast toxic algal bloom [that] spans much of the West Coast and has triggered numerous closures of important shellfish fisheries… The bloom stretches from the Central California Coast north to Washington and possibly Alaska

Seattle Times, Jun 15, 2015: Toxic algae bloom might be largest ever — Scientists onboard a NOAA research vessel are beginning a survey of what could be the largest toxic algae bloom ever recorded off the West Coast… At the same time, two other types of toxins rarely seen in combination are turning up,,, along the Washington coast… the toxin has never hit so hard in the spring, or required such widespread closures for crabs… concentrations in California anchovies this year [are] as high as any ever measured… [Dan Ayres with Washington’s Dept. of Fish & Wildlife] recently spotted a sea lion wracked by seizures… collapsed into a fetal position and quivered… Domoic-acid contamination is rare in Puget Sound, but several beds have been closed this year because of…  paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) and a relatively new threat called diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP). The first confirmed case of DSP poisoning in the United States occurred in 2011 [in Washington]… 2015 is the first time regulators have detected dangerous levels of PSP, DSP and domoic acid in the state at the same time — and in some cases, in the same places…

USA Today, Jun 15, 2015: Toxic algae bloom closes fisheries from Calif. to Washington

USA Today, Jun 15, 2015: Toxic algae bloom may stretch from California to Alaska

Half Moon Bay Review, Jun 11, 2015:  Potentially toxic fish wash ashore… “the event sounds similar to what I’ve experienced in Moss Landing Harbor,” said Chris Scholin, president of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. “And the level of poison in the fish here is thehighest concentration ever recorded… since the issue was first discovered… We don’t know if the fish have actually succumbed to the toxins but have found that the fish are extremely poisonous“… Scholin’s team in Monterey has observed dead birds.

See also: California cientists warning of mass die-off — Official: Seafloor littered with dead fish, washing up “far as I could see” — Toxin spreading all up and down West Coast (VIDEO)


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