Natural Algaecides: Compounds Produced by Barley Straw to Reduce Harmful Algal Blooms

Principal Investigator:

Allen Place

Start/End Year:

2019 - 2020


University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science

Co-Principal Investigator:

Taylor Armstrong, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology

Strategic focus area:

Healthy coastal ecosystems


Identification and development of effective algaecides for commercial use is an active area of research, as the intensity and frequency of harmful algal blooms (HABs) are increasing worldwide. Although algaecides are a focus of HAB mitigation, there are still many unknowns. To this end, we propose the following objectives: 1) identify the algaecides released by barley straw with and without the use of white-rot fungi, Trametes versicolor, in the laboratory, 2) identify the impact of the algaecides on microcystin toxin production (toxin per cell/total toxin) and growth rate of the blue-green algae, Microcystis aeruginosa, and 3) compare algaecides found in the controlled laboratory setting to those found in Lake Williston post barley straw deployment. This research will help scientists and managers understand which compounds are the best growth inhibitors of M. aeruginosa and if the addition of fungus in barley straw is a more effective management strategy for cyanobacterial blooms.

The Blue Crab: Callinectes Sapidus

An essential resource for researchers, students, and managers.  Get your copy today!

pile of cooked crabs