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Dead salmon. (Photo: Marcelo Torres YouTube)

Scientists to analyze possible red tide-salmon dumping link

Click on the flag for more information about Chile CHILE
Tuesday, May 17, 2016, 00:50 (GMT + 9)

Five excellent, internationally, nationally and regionally renowned experts are to work independently to determine whether there is a link between dead salmon dumping and the red tide.

Minister of Economy, Development and Tourism, Luis Felipe Cespedes, accompanied by the Undersecretary of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Raul Sunico, unveiled last Friday in Puerto Montt, the creation of the board of independent scientists who will evaluate the hypothesis about the link between salmon dumping and red tide situation affecting the Region of Los Lagos.

The economy minister reiterated the Government's commitment to transparency regarding all information on this phenomenon and the importance of generating the necessary public policies.

"We have said we want to be very transparent and clear to our citizens regarding this situation. Therefore, we asked Maria Teresa Ruiz, who is the president of the Academy of Sciences of Chile and professor at the University of Chile, to help us validate a team of independent experts, from all parties, so as to carry out this analysis."

In this regard, the Nationally Awarded Expert in Sciences (1997) María Teresa Ruiz, stressed: "As President of the Academy, I come here to show that we are involved in trying to understand or resolve within what can be the subject of the red tide which is affecting this area. The Academy has specialists in different subjects and there are many of them who are specialists in the sea with its fauna and flora, and I think the group that has been formed is really excellent, it is multidisciplinary and there are people who are really first class".

For her part, Professor and biochemistry Monica Vasquez, said they will develop a work schedule and a medium and long term plan. "There is urgency. Obviously a toxin that in this case affects the whole region requires a different urgency," she said.

Research coordinators are Monica Vasquez, a world specialist in molecular characterization of microalgae and dinoflagellates (red tide), and Alejandro Buschmann, Dr. in Biological Sciences with PUC Ecology mention, professor at the University of Los Lagos, researcher of the Centre I-Mar of Puerto Montt, a member of the Academy of Sciences and a specialist in ecology of algae.

The researchers are Fabian Tapia, MIT PHd in Oceanography, professor at the University of Concepcion, deputy director of the Centre for Marine Research Copas Sur-Austral and specialist in biological and physical problems of marine coast of southern Chile; Laura Farias, Dr. in Oceanography of the University of Concepción, professor at the University of Concepcion and specialist in biogeochemical processes in coastal waters; and Daniel Varela, Dr. in Sciences, mention in Ecology of U of Chile, professor at the University of Los Lagos and specialist in population dynamics of red tide organisms.

Earlier this month, Dr. Leonardo Guzman, head of the aquaculture division of the Fisheries Development Institute (IFOP), explained that the presence of dinoflagellate A. catenella is associated with very mild summer conditions that favor harmful microalgae bloom and total phytoplankton, and ruled out that this phenomenon was related to the salmon dumping 130 km from Chiloe.

Related articles:

- Red tide of poisonous algae is the world's second largest case
- Salmon dumping and red tide link discarded
- Red tide extension surprises scientists in Los Lagos
- 300 tonnes of dead salmon due to harmful algae dumped into sea

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