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Abstract

A long-term oceanographic program in the southern Gulf of Mexico provided an opportunity to assess the distribution of 27 known or presumed toxic phytoplankton species in this region. Material for this study consisted of water and net samples collected during 15 oceanographic surveys at 508 sites between 1979 and 2008. The most frequent species were: Dinophysis caudata, Protoperidinium oblongum, Lingulodinium polyedra, Dinophysis rapa and Karenia brevis. Karenia brevis and Karenia mikimotoi were the most abundant species with 5.4 million cells/L and 9258 cells/L, respectively. All species are illustrated by photomicrographs. Species distribution is briefly discussed.

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