Harmful algae monitoring map. Click photo to enlarge. Photo: Intesal

Fis.com reports that the Salmon Technological Institute (INTESAL) launched the first online platform open to the community, developed to monitor the abundance of total phytoplankton, harmful algae and red tide presence, specifically the species Alexandrium catenella abundance, and chlorophyll concentration.

“The objective of this site is to inform the community and producing companies of the state of phytoplankton conditions in the southern regions of Chile. In this way, we believe that all the users of the coastal edge will be able to plan their work more accurately. This idea was born as a need to protect the national salmon industry against Noxious Algal Blooms and today we extend that need to offer technical information to the community,” explained Alfredo Tello, INTESAL general manager.

INTESAL’s Phytoplankton Monitoring Program (PROMOFI) started in 1988 and has been refined over time. SalmonChile points out that in its 30 years of implementation it has been an effective support tool for an adequate management of the fish in farming centers. And today, publicly, it offers information on phytoplankton abundance and composition, which supports decision making.

“The Program covers farming areas located in the interior sea between the regions of Los Lagos and Magallanes, where phytoplankton populations are identified and quantified, with emphasis on species that are harmful to fish. In addition, we use meteorological and oceanographic information to properly interpret risk events and estimate temporal and spatial variations of phytoplankton,” Dr. Tello said.

INTESAL also works constantly in monitoring the temporal and spatial distribution of phytoplankton, determining harmful species, times and sectors of greater risk, determined mortality agents and causes and/or irregular fish behaviour.

“Monitoring has worked extensively in the industry. In addition, work is done that has helped to guide, channel and participate in applied research and performing forecasts with available technological tools,” said Dr. Tello.

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