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Casting for Cysts

Casting for Cysts

September 23, 2015

Alexis Fischer, a PhD candidate in the MIT-WHOI Joint Program, deploys a sediment trap in Salt Pond, a part of the Cape Cod National Seashore’s Nauset Marsh system. She monitors the fluctuations in dormant cysts of Alexandrium fundyense—a type of phytoplankton that causes harmful algal blooms or red tides—year-round in order to understand how temperature and the concentration of cysts affects the timing of the bloom from year-to-year. As part of WHOI biologist Don Anderson’s ongoing study of Nauset Marsh, this life cycle information may help scientists predict harmful algal blooms on a regional scale.(Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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