Dinophysis acuminata

High resolution image of Dinophysis acuminata. 2001 Photo courtesy of Brian Bill, Northwest Fisheries Science Center.

Dinophysis is a dinoflagellate with two hair-like structures called flagella that enable it to swim. It has wings that look like sails on a sailboat. Certain species are known to cause Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning with symptoms of intestinal upset that is often difficult to diagnose. Dinophysis is commonly found in Washington waters, but no ill effects have been reported to date.