Tuesday, May 30, 2006

"Biotoxin" Forces a Ban on Shellfishing in Parts of Long Island Sound, But Is it the Red Tide?

Shellfish on the north shore of Long Island have been infected with a biotoxin, prompting the state to ban shellfishing in

Northport Bay; Centerport Harbor; Duck Island Harbor; Lloyd Harbor; Coast Guard Cove and all of Huntington Bay south of a line extending northeast from the northernmost point of land at Lloyd Point to the northernmost point of land at Eatons Neck Point.

… The positive samples for the biotoxin were taken from Northport Harbor. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those who consume a piece of the contaminated shellfish generally experience mild symptoms within 15 minutes to 10 hours. The symptoms include tingling in the face, arms and legs, followed by dizziness, nausea and muscular incoordination. In the most severe cases, muscular paralysis, respiratory failure and death can occur within two to 25 hours.

Biotoxins are produced by living organisms. Those found to produce paralytic shellfish poisoning are often found in the cold waters off New England and Pacific states, according to the CDC. Last year, elevated biotoxin levels closed significant portions of the coasts of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts and off-shore federal waters to shellfishing, according to the state DEC.

The report is from Newsday, but unfortunately it leaves a lot of questions unanswered, particularly: Is this the dreaded Alexandrium red tide, which damaged shellfishing in New England last year but didn’t reach Long Island Sound?


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker