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Development of a toxic Alexandrium minutum Halim (Dinophyceae) bloom in the harbour of Sant Carles de la Ràpita (Ebro Delta, northwestern Mediterranean)
Maximino Delgado, Marta Estrada, Jordi Camp, Juan V. Fernández, Mercedes Santmartí, Cristina Lletí

A bloom of Alexandrium minutum, reaching concentrations up to 28 X 106 cells l-1, was observed in the harbour of S. Carles de La Rapita (northwestern Mediterranean) on 4th May 1989. During the following days, Paralyzing Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxicity was detected in mussels exposed to harbour waters and in mussels from the neighbouring bay of EIS Alfacs, where extensive cultures of bivalves are located. In El Fangar, the other bay of the delta, A. minutum was recorded in lower concentrations and no toxicity was detected in mussels. Shellfish extraction was stopped in.the delta region and no human illnesses occurred. This paper presents observations on phytoplankton distribution during the outbreak, in relation to hydrographical and metereological conditions. Possible implications for future toxic blooms in the area are discussed.

Keywords: toxic dinoflagellates, PSP, Ebro Delta.
Contents of this volume Sci. Mar. 54(1) : 1-7 Back PDF
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