Related topics: algae · water

NASA targets coastal ecosystems with new space sensor

NASA has selected a space-based instrument under its Earth Venture Instrument (EVI) portfolio that will make observations of coastal waters to help protect ecosystem sustainability, improve resource management, and enhance ...

NASA helps warn of harmful algal blooms in lakes, reservoirs

Harmful algal blooms can cause big problems in coastal areas and lakes across the United States. When toxin-containing aquatic organisms multiply and form a bloom, it can sicken people and pets, contaminate drinking water, ...

Remote sensing of toxic algal blooms

Harmful algal blooms in the Red Sea could be detected from satellite images using a method developed at KAUST. This remote sensing technique may eventually lead to a real-time monitoring system to help maintain the vital ...

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Algal bloom

An algal bloom is a rapid increase in the population of algae in an aquatic system. Algal blooms may occur in freshwater as well as marine environments. Typically, only one or a small number of phytoplankton species are involved, and some blooms may be recognized by discoloration of the water resulting from the high density of pigmented cells. Although there is no officially recognized threshold level, algae can be considered to be blooming at concentrations of hundreds to thousands of cells per milliliter, depending on the severity. Algal bloom concentrations may reach millions of cells per milliliter. Algal blooms are often green, but they can also be yellow-brown or red, depending on the species of algae.

Bright green blooms are a result of blue-green algae, which are actually bacteria (cyanobacteria). Blooms may also consist of macroalgal, not phytoplankton, species. These blooms are recognizable by large blades of algae that may wash up onto the shoreline. "Black water" is a dark discoloration of sea water, first described in the Florida Bay in January 2002.

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