California Sea Grant College Program
Exposure of Santa Cruz Wharf Anglers to Domoic Acid Toxins
- Author(s): Pomeroy, Caroline
- Silver, Mary W
- et al.
The goals of this pilot project were to determine the extent of the public health threat posed by pier anglers’ consumption of self-caught seafood containing domoic acid (DA), and to lay the foundation for further research, education and outreach to address the threat. Year 1 project objectives were to: 1) design, test and initiate an intercept survey of SCW anglers to identify and characterize their seafood consumption patterns; and 2) determine the concentrations of HAB toxins in the species targeted by SCW anglers, while monitoring ambient DA toxins and toxic Pseudo-nitzschia species in the SCW area and at a more open-water site. Year 2 project objectives were to: 1) determine whether a quantitative link exists between toxic phytoplankton in the water and DA contamination of commonly caught fish at the SCW; 2) determine the relationship between SCW anglers’ seafood consumption patterns and their socio-cultural and economic characteristics; 3) identify subpopulations of SCW anglers whose seafood consumption patterns put them at risk for exposure to DA; and 4) work with state agencies and other interested parties to determine how best to export these results to support their efforts to protect public health.