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Old 02-12-2015, 16:53   #1
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Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

I spotted this bit of news today.

Scientists Warn Climate Change Will Trigger Rise In Terrifying Illness

Think twice before ordering the snapper.


Chris D'Angelo
Associate Editor, HuffPost Hawaii
Posted: 12/02/2015 05:13 PM EST

As if rising sea levels, extreme weather and a host of other drastic environmental impacts weren't enough, scientists are now predicting that global climate change will lead to an increase in ciguatera -- a nasty and incurable foodborne illness.

Ciguatera is caused by eating tropical reef fish (such as grouper, snapper and barracuda) that have been contaminated with toxins from marine microalgae. It can result in nausea, vomiting and even some neurologic symptoms, including tingling fingers or toes and a reversed sense of hot and cold temperatures.

In a new study published in the journal Ecological Modeling, researchers with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that expected increases in ocean temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean through 2099 will likely lead to far more abundant and more diverse neurotoxins associated with ciguatera fish poisoning.


The forecast is part of a larger effort to develop and implement strategies for managing the risk of the illness, NOAA said in a release.

“Contaminated fish have no specific taste, color, or smell and there is no easy method for measuring ciguatoxins,” said Steve Kibler, a NOAA scientist and the study’s lead author, in the release. “However, we can forecast risk based on where and when we are likely to find the algae that produce ciguatoxins.”

More than 400 fish species are known to become contaminated, according to NOAA. In U.S. waters, ciguatera occurs in Hawaii, Guam, southern Florida, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and occasionally in the Gulf of Mexico.

Earlier this year, a study found that ciguatera poisonings in Florida were an estimated 28 times more common that previously thought.

An estimated 10,000 to 50,000 people suffer from the illness each year, making it the most commonly reported marine toxin disease in the world. However, those are likely just the tip of the iceberg, as only an estimated 2 to 10 percent of all cases are actually reported to health authorities.

While ciguatera's symptoms can be treated, the illness itself has no cure. And anecdotal reports indicate that some patients experience recurring neurologic symptoms upon consuming alcohol, fish and other foods, even years after the initial exposure.

“Whatever I touched, if it was hot, it would feel cold. If it was cold, it felt hot,” one patient recalled. “I couldn’t walk on the tile floor. It felt like it was burning me.”

If global sea level rise wasn't enough to convince you it's time to reduce your carbon footprint, maybe your appetite for fish will.
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Old 02-12-2015, 18:36   #2
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Here we go again.

And they got it out just in time for COP 21.
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Old 02-12-2015, 18:49   #3
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Here ya go, just in case you feel the need to warn us about anything else that may be caused by possible future global warming:

A Complete List Of Things Supposedly Caused By Global Warming
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Old 03-12-2015, 00:08   #4
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Yair, yair, yair yair, and the sky is going to fall in too chicken little.


Millions of people live in the tropics and eat gazillions of pounds of tropical fish every year without succumbing.
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Old 03-12-2015, 00:49   #5
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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Originally Posted by StuM View Post
Here ya go, just in case you feel the need to warn us about anything else that may be caused by possible future global warming:

A Complete List Of Things Supposedly Caused By Global Warming
Stu - we gotta start taking this seriously - I mean, have you seen this on your list?

, wine - harm to Australian industry , wine industry damage (California) , wine industry disaster (France) , wine - more English , wine industry disaster (US) , wine - more English , wine - England too hot , wine -German boon , wine - no more French , wine passé (Napa)

We might have to resort to drinking gin with our dinner
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Old 03-12-2015, 03:04   #6
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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Yair, yair, yair yair, and the sky is going to fall in too chicken little.


Millions of people live in the tropics and eat gazillions of pounds of tropical fish every year without succumbing.
Without reference to global whatever, what you say ignores the fact that a lot of folks do get ciguatera every year. FWIW, Ann and I have had three attacks from this evil foe, all in New Caledonia. We no longer fish there. It is never a fun experience, and now with our loading doses, we are at risk of serious repercussions if we should eat another intoxicated fish. It would not be a good thing for us if the toxin should spread further.

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Old 03-12-2015, 03:59   #7
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pirate Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Not in the least bit concerned...
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Old 03-12-2015, 05:15   #8
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

The reason people in Florida are getting more ciguarera is because what they think they are getting in restaurants is not really the grouper they ordered. It's barracuda.
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Old 03-12-2015, 05:17   #9
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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... Millions of people live in the tropics and eat gazillions of pounds of tropical fish every year without succumbing.
Unfortunately, many do.

“The most commonly reported marine toxin disease in the world is Ciguatera, associated with consumption of contaminated reef fish such as barracuda, grouper, and snapper.
Under-diagnosis and under-reporting (especially in endemic areas such as the Caribbean) make it difficult to know the true worldwide incidence of the Marine Toxin Diseases.
At least 50,000 people per year who live in or visit tropical and subtropical areas suffer from Ciguatera worldwide.
For example, CDC and others estimate that only 2-10% of Ciguatera cases are actually reported in the United States.
In the US Virgin Islands, there are an estimated 300 cases per 10,000 or 3% of the population per year; a similar rate is found in the French West Indies. In St. Thomas, a household survey estimated that 4.4% of all households suffered from Ciguatera annually (at least 2640 persons per year or an annual incidence of 600 cases per year); in Puerto Rico, 7% of the residents have experienced at least one episode of Ciguatera in their lifetime ...”

Ciguatera Fish Poisoning
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Old 03-12-2015, 05:18   #10
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Well, perhaps we should just make ciguatera illegal. That should stop it entirely.
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Old 03-12-2015, 06:06   #11
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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The reason people in Florida are getting more ciguarera is because what they think they are getting in restaurants is not really the grouper they ordered. It's barracuda.
Grouper is a top reef predator. It is just as likely, if not more so, to accumulate ciguatera. Most of the cig poisonings I have witnessed are due to the consumption of grouper. And… grouper are very long lived, highly intelligent, slowly reproducing animals. If they are not appearing genuinely in restaurants anymore, it is because of the damned restaurants! I have no idea why people the world over seem to think it is their deity given birthright to be able to wander into any restaurant, anywhere in the world, and buy ANY fish species they damn well please.

Really boils my blood.
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Old 03-12-2015, 06:08   #12
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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Yair, yair, yair yair, and the sky is going to fall in too chicken little.


Millions of people live in the tropics and eat gazillions of pounds of tropical fish every year without succumbing.
Ciguatera is a very common and often very serious disease of the tropics.

However the idea that a "model" has projected it to rise dramatically due to "global warming" seems a stretch, at best. I am getting rather tired of people worrying more about things that may perhaps be, maybe and ignoring the things that are indeed immediate problems now!
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Old 03-12-2015, 08:42   #13
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

THE BAHAMIAN LOCALS HAVE A TEST FOR CIGUATERA IN FISH THAT THEY HAVE BEEN USING FOR GENERATIONS!!!

HERE'S THE TEST: When you're cleaning the fish, IF NO FLYS WILL LAND ON IT - DON'T EAT IT!!!
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Old 03-12-2015, 08:49   #14
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

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THE BAHAMIAN LOCALS HAVE A TEST FOR CIGUATERA IN FISH THAT THEY HAVE BEEN USING FOR GENERATIONS!!!

HERE'S THE TEST: When you're cleaning the fish, IF NO FLYS WILL LAND ON IT - DON'T EAT IT!!!
I am afraid that it would be unwise to trust any such "old fisherman's tale". There are many similar told by many populations of locals around the world. Such as the Polynesians who believe that if rigor mortis doesn't set in in an obvious manner one must not eat etc.

However no such tales have ever been demonstrated to be true, and the locals seem to get sick nonetheless. One of the polynesians who swore by the rigor mortis idea spent 2.5 years paralysed in hospital and 1.5 years thereafter learning to walk again, despite his "knowledge", and didn't seem to see any conflict with that. I am afraid I did. Many of these ideas have been tested and proven to have no correlation with reality. I wouldn't trust these ideas at all. Simply do not eat reef fish in ciguatera affected areas. At all.
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Old 03-12-2015, 08:53   #15
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Re: Ciguatera - foodborne illness - think twice before eating reef fish

Huffington Post? That seals it for me. Let's insist that the community Organizer in Chief appoint a Ciguatera Czar to establish a Homeland Security sized staff to hang out and play a little round ball at the Whitehouse. While they spend their days confirming the Community Organizer's brilliance, collecting huge salaries and graft, we can relax in knowing that the problem is well in hand. I'm feeling better about this already!
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