Tami Canal
June 18, 2016 ·

Officially, California’s crab season was closed due to a record bloom of an algae called Pseudo-Nitzchia, also known as red tide. The record red tide began in April, stretched as far north as Washington, and dissipated around October. Some patches were as much as 40 miles wide.
Red tide is dangerous because it produces a neurotoxin called domoic acid, which can cause tremors, memory loss and even death. Even though the tide dissipated in October, California officials claimed that domoic acid from the tide had accumulated at dangerous levels in seafood, particularly crabs.
In late December, the state partially lifted the crab ban, allowing some fishing off the coasts of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties. But consumers are still advised to rinse these crabs before cooking them, and to avoid eating their internal organs.

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