Harvesting oysters, clams and mussels along Galveston Bay is off-limits for a while because of a dangerous type of algae.
The Texas Department of State Health Services temporarily closed the bay because of elevated levels of algae that can produce a toxin in some shellfish. Both Commercial and recreational harvesters can’t go to the Bay until further notice.
Health services found elevated levels of Dinophysis algae in the bay, which builds quickly in shellfish. People who ingest it can get diuretic shellfish poisoning, which causes vomiting, diarrhea, nausea and cramping. However, it is not life-threatening. Cooking the shellfish will not destroy the toxin.
According to health services, the toxin does not affect other seafood, such as shrimp crab or finfish. Officials will keep testing the water until it’s safe to harvest again. To check the status of Texas bays, call (800) 685-0361.
Public oyster season ends April 30.