New research could help predict red tide

(PhysOrg.com) -- Not far beneath the ocean's surface, tiny phytoplankton swimming upward in a daily commute toward morning light sometimes encounter the watery equivalent of Rod Serling's Twilight Zone: a sharp variation ...

Ocean circulation likely to blame for severity of 2018 red tide

The harmful algae that causes red tide is currently at near undetectable levels in Florida waters compared with the much higher concentrations at this time last year. The red tide algae, Karenia brevis, causes respiratory ...

How red tide knocks out its competition

New research reveals how the algae behind red tide thoroughly disables – but doesn't kill – other species of algae. The study shows how chemical signaling between algae can trigger big changes in the marine ecosystem.

When hungry, Gulf of Mexico algae go toxic

When Gulf of Mexico algae don't get enough nutrients, they focus their remaining energy on becoming more and more poisonous to ensure their survival, according to a new study by scientists from North Carolina State University ...

Robot monitors toxic red tides

A robotic device suspended under the ocean surface from a buoy off the New Hampshire coast is monitoring seawater for evidence of the red tide, clusters of microscopic plants that release toxins into fish and shellfish, making ...

Harmful 'red tide' hits Dubai beaches

Beaches in the Gulf tourism hub of Dubai have been plagued by a bloom of algae known as the "red tide" that has killed fish and is potentially harmful to humans, a municipality official said on Tuesday.

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Red tide

Red tide is a common name for a phenomenon more correctly known as an algal bloom, an event in which estuarine, marine, or fresh water algae accumulate rapidly in the water column. These algae, more specifically phytoplankton, are single-celled protists, plant-like organisms that can form dense, visible patches near the water's surface. Certain species of phytoplankton, such as Dinoflagelate, contain photosynthetic pigments that vary in colour from green to brown to red.

When the algae are present in high concentrations, the water appears to be discoloured or murky, varying in colour from purple to almost pink, normally being red or green. Not all algal blooms are dense enough to cause water discolouration, and not all discoloured waters associated with algal blooms are red. Additionally, red tides are not typically associated with tidal movement of water, hence the preference among scientists to use the term algal bloom.

Some red tides are associated with the production of natural toxins, depletion of dissolved oxygen or other harmful effects, and are generally described as harmful algal blooms. The most conspicuous effects of red tides are the associated wildlife mortalities among marine and coastal species of fish, birds, marine mammals and other organisms. In the case of Florida red tides, these mortalities are caused by exposure to a potent neurotoxin called brevetoxin which is produced naturally by the marine algae Karenia brevis.

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