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Photo of <em>Asteromphalus hepctactis</em> by Gabriela Hannach, King County Environmental Lab Photo of <em>Asteromphalus hepctactis</em> by Gabriela Hannach, King County Environmental Lab

Photo credit: Gabriela Hannach, King County Environmental Lab

Phytoplankton of the month — August 2018

Asteromphalus hepctactis

Asteromphalus heptactis are solitary centric diatoms with a diameter between 38-175μm in valve view. These cells can be oval, circular, or oblong with seven rays extending from a central region. Sectors between rays are wedge shaped, areolated, and curve towards the valve center. In girdle view, the raised rays can be observed as points. Asteromphalus are found in warm, temperate, and southern cold water regions.

For more information see: A Taxonomic Guide to Some Common Marine Phytoplankton, by Rita Horner (Biopress Ltd. 2002)

SoundToxins, a diverse partnership of Washington state shellfish and finfish growers, environmental learning centers, Native tribes, and Puget Sound volunteers, is a monitoring program designed to provide early warning of harmful algal bloom events in order to minimize both human health risks and economic losses to Puget Sound fisheries.

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