General Information

Event name: CA-96-001
Country: CANADA
Nature of the harmful event:
Seafood toxins
Event directly affected:
Toxicity detected: No
Associated syndrome: PSP
Unexplained toxicity: No
Species implicated in toxin transmission (transvector): Clams.
Report the outcome of a monitoring programme: Yes
Event occurred before in this location: Yes (PSP toxicity has been measured by the mouse biossay technique on regular basis since 1961 in the St. Lawrence. Algae are monitored at the coastal stations only since 1989.)
Individuals to contact: LEVASSEUR, Maurice , SAUVÉ, Gilbert

Location & Date

[View larger map]
Location: Latitude: , Longitude:
General location information: South coast St. Lawrence Estuary, Terranova.
HAB Area code(s): CA-07
Additional location information: Station Ste. Flavie. Harmful algae are monitored on a weekly basis at 11 stations in the Gulf of St. Lawrence since 1989 (See Complementary Information)
Bloom event dates (yyyy/mm/dd): Event Date:1996-08-17
Quarantine levels dates (yyyy/mm/dd):
Additional date-related information:


Causative organism known: Yes
Causative Species/Genus: Alexandrium tamarense (142,976 cells/L)
Highest concentration
Co-Ocurring Species/Genus:
Chlorophyll concentration, if known: µg/l
Additional bloom information:
Event-related bibliography:

Environmental Conditions

Weather: 1996 was atypical. Between 19 and 21 July, more than 225 mm of rain fell over the Saguenay river area in the Province of Quebec. This unusual weather resulted in the flooding of several towns along the Saguenay River. In the St. Lawrence stuary, the heavy Turbidity (NTU): Wind direction:
Stratified water: No Oxygen content (nL/L): Wind velocity:
Temperature (°C): Oxygen saturation %: Current Direction:
Sechhi disk (m): Salinity: Current Velocity: 0
Nutrient information:
Temperature Range During Event: Max: °C, Min: °C
Salinity Range During Event:
Bloom location in the water column:
In situ
Growth Comments
Additional Environmental information:

Toxin Assay Information

Species containing the toxin Toxin type Toxin details Max. concentration Assay type
Clams Saxitoxins STX eq > 80 Bioassay-Mouse
Kit used: Type of kit used:
Additional information: Bioassay-Mouse
Economic losses:
Management decision: Shellfish areeas with PSP toxins concentrations exeeding 80 ug STX equi./100 g were closed to harvesting during variable periods of time during summer months of 1996. During 1996 red-tide, concerns for the potential transfer of the toxins from the sand la
Additional harmful effect information: In 1996 three persons became seriuosly ill and were hospitalized after eating toxic clams during the red-tide event.
Updated at 08:42 on 25 Sep 2013