FlowCam® for Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring

HAB pic 2Use the FlowCam imaging flow cytometer for cyanobacteria classification and to study and monitor both marine and freshwater harmful algal blooms (HABs). Verify if organisms capable of producing cyanotoxins are present and quantify them. 

Freshwater HABs containing cyanobacteria can be differentiated from other algae based on the analysis of fluorescing pigments.

Estimate biovolume, count cells and calculate the abundance of each taxonomic group.

Use the FlowCam to:

  • Analyze particles sizes 2 µm to 1 mm
  • Identify, count, and measure phytoplankton
  • Process a 1 mL sample in 6 minutes
  • VisualSpreadsheet® software performs image analysis by measuring 40+ morphological parameters including biovolume, coloration, shape, and size to classify taxa


  • Identify and enumerate HAB organisms, including cyanobacteria, diatoms, dinoflagellates
  • Calculate biovolume and concentration
  • Count cells in colonies and filaments
  • Analyze population dynamics 
  • Forecast HAB events
  • Export Data to CSV Format

Top Studies on Cyanobacteria Research

Flow Imaging Microscopy: How it works >>

To see if the FlowCam will work for you, submit a sample for free analysis.


Customer Quotes: 

“ It used to take us 3-4 hours to do algae counts in the summer. Now it takes 15 minutes. We use the FlowCam because it’s quick and easy.... Using the FlowCam as part of our integrated strategy has prevented larger outbreaks, compared to previous years...."

—Hunter Adams, Water Laboratory Supervisor for the City of Wichita Falls, TX

“HABs move quickly. The ocean is an ever-changing environment; for us it is not a matter of if we see HABs, but when. HABs can have an impact on our stocks causing reduced feed rates and even mortality. As climate change identifies increasing algae species, we need to adapt to this new environment more quickly.”  

—Dean Trethewey, Seawater Production Director at Grieg Seafood. Read more about Grieg Seafood and their use of the FlowCam here. 


Resources for HAB Monitoring

Access our complete library of downloadable resources here >>


Case Studies



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