Marine Toxin Monitoring

Background

Since September 2013, Tolowa Dee-ni' Nation has been submitting shellfish samples to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) in Richmond for analysis and detection of naturally occurring marine toxins that will inform local and statewide health advisories and quarantines.

Health Concerns:

Domoic acid is a naturally occurring toxin that is related to a "bloom" of a particular single-celled diatom called Pseudo-nitzschia, while PSP is related to a "bloom" of single-celled dinoflagellates called Alexandrium. The conditions that support the growth of Pseudo-nitzschia and Alexandrium are impossible to predict. Crustaceans, fish and shellfish are capable of accumulating elevated levels of both toxins without apparent ill effects on the animals. Elevated levels of these toxins in crustaceans, fish and shellfish pose a significant risk to the public if these adulterated products are consumed. Domoic acid and PSP can be fatal to people if consumed in high doses.

Symptoms:

Symptoms of domoic acid poisoning can occur within 30 minutes to 24 hours after eating toxic seafood. In mild cases, symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, headache and dizziness. These symptoms disappear within several days. In severe cases, the victim may experience trouble breathing, confusion, disorientation, cardiovascular instability, seizures, excessive bronchial secretions, permanent loss of short-term memory (a condition known as Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning), coma or death.

Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning symptoms begin within a few minutes to a few hours after eating toxic shellfish. Symptoms begin with tingling and numbness of the lips, tongue and fingertips. Later symptoms are lack of balance, lack of muscle coordination, slurred speech and problems in swallowing. Complete paralysis and death can occur in severe cases.

Traditional Foods:

There are no mechanisms for these toxins to accumulate in lat (seaweed), therefore it would be safe to consume.  Duu-ma (anemones) should also be safe to eat.

Units & Sampling

Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxins:
Units = ug/100g
Alert level = 80ug/100g

Domoic Acid (DA) levels:
Units = parts per million (ppm)
Alert Level = 20 ppm

Mussel samples are taken from around Hunter Rock and Prince Island.

Razor Clam samples are taken from South Beach and Crescent Beach when tides allow.

For more information call the Biotoxin Information line at 1-800-553-4133 or visit

https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CEH/DRSEM/Pages/EMB/Shellfish/Shellfish-Program.aspx

Results

Shellfish gathered are frozen and sent to CDPH for analysis. Mussels are analyzed whole, while Razor clam viscera (guts) and muscle are analyzed separately.

Date PSP DA
12-May-21 ND ND
14-Apr-21 34 ND
25-Mar-21 ND ND
8-Feb-21 ND ND
8-Jan-21
ND ND
10-Dec-20 39 ND
15-Oct-20 40 <2.5
3-Sep-20 40 ND
5-Aug-20 ND <2.5
22-Jun-20 ND ND
29-May-20 ND ND
28-May-20 37 ND
27-Apr-20 37 ND
2-Apr-20 <2.5 ND
12-Mar-20 <2.5 ND
23-Jan-20 ND <2.5
9-Dec-19 41 7.2
25-Nov-19 76 2.5
27-Oct-19 37 2.5
3-Jul-19 <2.5 ND
5-Jun-19 ND ND
24-Apr-19 ND ND
12-Apr-19 37 ND
4-Mar-19 <2.5 ND

Sample Type

Date

DA

Volunteer Meat 4/30/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/30/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/30/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/28/21 4.6
Volunteer Meat 4/28/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/28/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 3.3
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 4/1/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 <2.5
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 3.3
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 3.4
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 3.5
Volunteer Meat 3/12/21 12
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 17
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 34
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 28
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 3.9
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 10
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 14
Volunteer Meat 2/10/21 10
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 < 2.5
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 < 2.5
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 < 2.5
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 2.7
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 2.9
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 6.1
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 12
Volunteer Meat 8/19/20 94
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 3
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 3.4
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 4.8
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 6.3
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 17
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 21
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 23
Volunteer Meat 8/3/20 36
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 7.5
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 9.2
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 11
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 15
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 15
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 25
Volunteer Meat 7/4/2020 39
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 13
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 21
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 23
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 31
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 45
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 56
Volunteer Meat 6/5/2020 56
Razor Clam Meat 5/8/2020 8.3
Razor Clam Meat 5/8/2020 11
Razor Clam Meat  5/8/2020 21
Razor Clam Meat 5/8/2020 25
Razor Clam Meat* 5/8/2020 25
Razor Clam Meat* 5/8/2020 27
Razor Clam Meat 5/8/2020 29
Razor Clam Meat* 5/8/2020 35
Razor Clam Meat 5/8/2020 36
Razor Clam Meat* 5/8/2020 37
* Pooled sample of 15 clams.  
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 16
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 6.4
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 23
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 9.6
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 65
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 36
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 16
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 14
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 23
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 55
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 66
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 28
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 6.4
Razor Clam Meat 4/9/2020 12
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 8.5
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 35
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 59
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 70
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 81
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 100
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 140
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 160
Razor Clam Meat 3/8/2020 180
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 21
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 28
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 30
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 46
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 94
Razor Clam Meat 2/8/2020 99
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 180
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 130
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 130
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 160
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 130
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 110
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 160
Razor Clam Meat 10/28/19 160

Waa-saa-ghitlh-'a~ Wee-ni Naa-ch'aa-ghitlh-ni

Our Heritage Is Why We Are Strong

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