Domoic Health Advisories Lifted

Paul Wellman

Health advisories in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties have been removed for scallops and clams as recent testing by the California Department of Public Health revealed safe or undetectable levels domoic acid, a naturally occurring toxin. However, the statewide annual quarantine on sport-harvested mussels remains in effect and applies to all species along the California coast, including bays and estuaries. Health officials anticipate the mussel quarantine will continue into November.

No cases of human poisoning from consuming domoic acid are known in California, according to the department. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, headache, and dizziness. Severe cases may include trouble breathing, confusion, disorientation, cardiovascular instability, seizures, excessive bronchial secretions, permanent loss of short-term memory, coma, or death.

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