Red Tide Under Control 

Intensive monitoring and good luck may

share the credit for Maine’s ability so far to dodge the

red-tide-caused economic damage sustained along the coast during

the summer of 2005.

Toxic algae has already prompted curbs on shellfish harvesting

and more red tide could still blow in.

But an intensified monitoring effort has kept more Down East

clam diggers working this time and state officials hope the

preparations also will help the shellfish industry in southern

Maine if red tide surges.

The state is using a federally funded network of buoys to detect

blooms of red tide and serve as an early warning system. It also is

using $143,000 in federal disaster aid from the 2005 red tide bloom

to triple the size of its monitoring staff so that 12 people can

visit the state’s harbors and bays to collect samples of clams and