Texas Liberal

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Toxic Golden Alga (Singular) Menaces Texas Freshwater Fish—Some Links To Study Algae (Plural)

File:Algae harvester-1.jpg

(Above–An algae harvester. In 2005, a used algae harverster was putchased for the good of the people of Carroll County, Indiana.)

The Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife reports the following—  

“Since January 2009, a microscopic alga most often found in north and west Texas has been confirmed at four south Texas sites: Corpus Christi, Kingsville, McAllen, and Jim Hogg County. All four occurrences caused fish kills in private ponds and investigations by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Kills and Spills Team have found no evidence that public waters were affected. …The organism, Prymnesium parvum or golden alga, is a naturally-occurring species that was first confirmed in Texas’ Pecos River in 1985, marking the first record in the Western Hemisphere. Since then, golden alga has been found to occur in inland waters of an additional 15 states. Prior to 1985, this species was mostly known from brackish European waters…. Sometimes the algae reproduce very rapidly, resulting in what is referred to as a bloom. Golden alga blooms can give the water a yellow or copper color and cause foaming along shorelines. Under certain environmental conditions, golden alga produces toxins that affect gill-breathing organisms such as fish, clams and mussels. There is no evidence that these toxins harm other wildlife, livestock or humans….Fish can escape a toxic bloom by retreating into an area that receives fresh, flowing water, such as a cove or inlet…. It remains unknown why golden alga blooms have been restricted to freshwater in the U.S., while they are a coastal concern in places such as Europe, the Mediterranean, and New Zealand. Due to its wide salinity tolerance, there is concern that golden alga might one day threaten Texas’ bays and estuaries and cause fish kills similar to those caused by red tides…Golden alga does not thrive in waters with salinity below approximately 1.5 parts per thousand. Pond owners might reduce the chances of a bloom, and any resulting threat to surrounding water bodies, by avoiding the filling or topping of ponds with salty ground or surface water…TPWD has neither the authority nor the resources to treat private ponds. More information about golden alga, including treatment options for private waters, can be found on the TPWD Web site.”

The TDPW has more information on the golden alga than you could ever imagine.

Here is a definition of Algae—

“Any of various chiefly aquatic, eukaryotic, photosynthetic organisms, ranging in size from single-celled forms to the giant kelp. Algae were once considered to be plants but are now classified separately because they lack true roots, stems, leaves, and embryos.”

Here is a definition of the word eukaryotic. I don’t know that word—

“A single-celled or multicellular organism whose cells contain a distinct membrane-bound nucleus.”

There are different types of harmful algal blooms. 

The Red Tide is the most well-known of these blooms.

Here is information on algae.

Algae can be our friend or it can kill fish and make us sick.

I vote for friendship with algae!

( Below–Kelp is an alga.)

File:Kelp forest.jpg

May 28, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , ,

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