This will be the last KBNERR Phytoplankton Update for 2021. This week we saw an increase in abundance of Pseudo-nitzschia at two sample locations, Eldred passage and Peterson Bay. Pseudo-nitzschia sp. can produce domoic acid and cause amnesiac shellfish poisoning when toxic shellfish are consumed. Cell counts for all three species of concern are used to determine abundance classification. It is not unusual for Pseudo-nitzschia to reach these density levels in Kachemak Bay during the sampling season. To date in Alaska there are no reported cases of amnesiac shellfish poisoning in humans.
Additional information, including qualitative analysis of phytoplankton data, is available in the Phytoplankton Update for Oct 1st – Oct 7th.