Alexandrium surface live counts. R/V Tioga, July 29-30, 2008
(D. Anderson & D. McGillicuddy laboratories))
The unexpected decline in the Alexandrium population on Georges Bank observed June 27 – July 3 on R/V Endeavor cruise EN448 suggested that bloom may be winding down. In order to ascertain whether or not that was the case, R/V Tioga sampled the two sections of Georges Bank where we have consistently found highest Alexandrium concentrations in our prior surveys. This achievement was made possible by superb scientific operations on the part of Bruce Keafer, Kerry Norton, Bibiana Crespo, and Keston Smith, together with the outstanding seamanship of Capt. Ken Houtler and crew Ian Hanley. As you will see in the map, Alexandrium is absent from those two sections, indicating the Georges Bank bloom is over (for now). Thus the GOMTOX objective of sampling the seasonal evolution of that bloom is complete. Therefore, our upcoming cruise EN451 (August 6-12) will focus on the Bay of Fundy and eastern Maine. We will keep you updated as those data become available.