Related topics: algae · water

How sticklebacks dominate perch

A research project on algal blooms along the Swedish coast, caused by eutrophication, revealed that large predators such as perch and pike are also necessary to restrict these blooms. Ecologist Britas Klemens Eriksson from ...

Scientists catalogue shark and ray distribution in Florida lagoon

Many elasmobranch species, which include sharks, skates, and rays, use estuaries as nurseries, for birthing, and as foraging grounds. Florida's Indian River Lagoon is one of 28 estuaries designated as an "estuary of national ...

Learning how to battle harmful algae blooms

Throughout the world's oceans in global nutrient cycles, food chains, and climate, as well as increasingly in human-made industrial processes, a diverse set of planktonic microbes, such as algae, play an integral role. For ...

A walk through the rainbow with PACE

Why are there so many songs about rainbows? For NASA's upcoming Plankton, Aerosol, Cloud, ocean Ecosystem mission, or PACE, the colors of the rainbow—or, if you prefer, the visible wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum—are ...

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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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