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The Hunt for Red Water

Myrionecta rubra is a neritic, planktonic ciliate distributed throughout the globe in marine and brackish waters. It creates impressive non-toxic, red blooms as seen here under the Astoria-Megler Bridge in the Columbia River estuary.

For several decades massive red tides of the photosynthetic ciliate, M. rubra have been observed in the Columbia River estuary every summer or early fall. CMOP scientists including Lydie Herfort are trying to determine if it could be used as a sentinel for environmental change. Herfort is shown here collecting a red water sample in the estuary.

Read more about the research into Myrionecta rubra.



(Photo: Jeff Schilling/CMOP)