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MONITORING AND MANAGEMENT OF ALGAL BLOOMS IN VIRGINIA: AN INTERAGENCY APPROACH TO FRESHWATER AND COASTAL HABS IN RECREATIONAL AND SHELLFISH WATERS.

Algal blooms annually occur throughout Virginia’s lakes, rivers, estuaries and coastal zones including those that may affect human and environmental health through toxin production or other impacts. The Virginia Harmful Algal Bloom Taskforce is a collaboration of state regulatory agencies and academic research institutions to address the growing concern of HABs throughout the commonwealth. Cyanobacteria blooms of toxin producing Microcystis, Planktothrix and Anabaena species have occurred on an annual basis in freshwater lakes and ponds in recent years. Tiered thresholds including cell densities and microcystin concentrations have been developed for advisory guidance of recreational waters within the state. Coastal estuarine waters, including shellfish growing areas are monitored for potentially toxic phytoplankton species as part of the state’s biotoxin contingency plan. While biotoxins have not been found to impact shellfish within the state, blooms of Pseudo-nitzschia and Dinophysis species have occurred in Chesapeake Bay and Virginia coastal bays in recent years, and are monitored closely by the Division of Shellfish Sanitation, including densities and toxin concentrations. In addition, annually recurring blooms of Cochlodinium polykrikoides and Alexandrium monilatum appear to be increasing in extent throughout the region. Ongoing efforts to evaluate the impact of these species and others to natural resources and potential human health include bioassays and toxin characterizations, as well as expanded ambient monitoring throughout the region.

Authors

Egerton, T. A., Virginia Department of Health Division of Shellfish, USA, todd.egerton@vdh.virginia.gov

Skiles, B. K., Virginia Department of Health Division of Shellfish, USA, keith.skiles@vdh.virginia.gov

Smigo, M., Virginia Department of Health Division of Environmental Epidemiology, USA, margaret.smigo@vdh.virginia.gov

Reece, K. S., Virginia Institute of Marine Science, USA, kreece@vims.edu

Smith, J. L., Virginia Institute of Marine Science, USA, jlsmith@vims.edu

Details

Poster presentation

Session #:021
Date: 03/03/2017
Time: 11:00 - 12:00
Location: Poster/Exhibit Hall

Presentation is given by student: No

PosterID: 220