Research Assistant

Karen HenschenName
Karen Henschen

Position
Research Assistant

Section
Ecosystem Assessment and Restoration – Harmful Algal Blooms – Microscopy Laboratory

Education
B.S. Biology, University of South Florida

Research Interests
Phytoplankton ecology and taxonomy, harmful algae, Florida red tide, volunteer management

Current Activity
As the coordinator of the Red Tide Offshore/Inshore Monitoring Program (RTOMP), I organize volunteer and partner field efforts in HAB event response and routine sampling throughout the state of Florida. I oversee microscopic analysis, enumeration and data reporting for incoming volunteer water samples. I also scientifically classify algal communities and HAB taxa using a traditional taxonomic approach.  Finally, I write and distribute the RTOMP Volunteer Newsletter, which is made available to volunteers, partners and the public.

 



FWC Facts:
Saxitoxin, the compound that produces paralytic shellfish poisoning, was used in suicide pills for U.S. U-2 spy plane pilots in the Cold War in case of crash and potential capture.

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