Please Sign In

Please enter a valid username and password
  • Log in with Facebook
» Not a member? Take a moment to register
» Forgot Username or Password

Lake Erie Suffers Worst Algae Blooms in History

Syndicate

Syndicate content
Google Reader or Homepage
Add to My Yahoo!

Newshound Recent Posts

Categories

Recent Comments

Archives

Newshound
in your Inbox

Enter your email address to get our new post everyday.

December 16, 2011
Lake Erie Suffers Worst Algae Blooms in History - 4

Eerie news this week about … Lake Erie.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources reports that Lake Erie’s toxic algae blooms are at the worst levels in history and that fish and billions of dollars in tourism revenues are at risk. Blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, is common in the lake but record rainfall in the past year has washed unprecedented amounts of farm fertilizer, manure and sewage into the water causing substantial growth and expansion of algae blooms. Blue-green algae excrete liver and nerve toxins that can kill pets, wipe out fish populations, and sicken humans. 

On some parts of the lake the algae is so deep that Jack Madison, general manager of a marina in Ottawa County tells The Columbus Dispatch “People could set beer cans on the algae. It is that thick.” 

Another indication of just how bad the blooms are comes in the change in questions anglers ask the Lake Erie Waterkeepers, a group advocating preservation of the watershed. President Dave Spangler says, “It used to be, years ago, that people would call and ask, 'Are the fish biting?'  Now, the first question is, ‘How bad is the algae?’ We had a bloom in October that was so thick that it slowed our boats down.”  Spangler says this has resulted in a 30 percent drop in business this year alone.
   
The state spent $3.5 million this year to spray alum on the lake in an effort to counteract phosphorus, the chemical in the runoff that feeds the algae but more and greater measures are needed to halt the problem. Scott Nally, director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, says his office will submit a proposal to counteract the Lake Erie pollution to Ohio Gov. John Kasich by February. 
   
We need some firsthand info!  Have any of you seen this algae up close?  Is it as bad as media reports indicate?

Comments (4)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Dcast wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I have seen these blooms but not in Lake Erie, but in Lake St. Mary's here in Ohio. The water looks like pea soup. I question the EPA's hypothesis that it is solely phosphorus. We have had a very warm and humid summer the last several years with very little rainfall from mid june through October. Most bodies of water in Ohio had algae blooms whether toxic or not and they all had the same things in common; shallow water, stagnant(?) water, low to no wind,an little rainfall. Look at this site http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=76127&src=iotdrss Notice the bloom is consentrated in the shallowest parts of the lake (Western Basin) and also note the fact that the blooms are being blown and taken by current to consentrated area. This isn't a good thing by any means I enjoy going there and walleye & smallmouth fishing but I want them to find the real cause instead of just saying it is purely the cause of phosphate runoff.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I was thinking the same thing as Orange Grove. Has anyone smelled it?
-I know I have seen small farm ponds around where I live that were covered in algae because of farming fertilizer and it smelled awful(and it was just a tiny pond).

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ted Arneson wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

Oh it sure is - check out a couple of photos from the lake this year, that were posted on TheRockyRiver.com's Facebook page:

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/310208_171625489591994_11...

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/296474_171625309592012_11...

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Orange Grove wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I wanna know what that stuff smells like

+2 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

from Orange Grove wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I wanna know what that stuff smells like

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I was thinking the same thing as Orange Grove. Has anyone smelled it?
-I know I have seen small farm ponds around where I live that were covered in algae because of farming fertilizer and it smelled awful(and it was just a tiny pond).

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

I have seen these blooms but not in Lake Erie, but in Lake St. Mary's here in Ohio. The water looks like pea soup. I question the EPA's hypothesis that it is solely phosphorus. We have had a very warm and humid summer the last several years with very little rainfall from mid june through October. Most bodies of water in Ohio had algae blooms whether toxic or not and they all had the same things in common; shallow water, stagnant(?) water, low to no wind,an little rainfall. Look at this site http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=76127&src=iotdrss Notice the bloom is consentrated in the shallowest parts of the lake (Western Basin) and also note the fact that the blooms are being blown and taken by current to consentrated area. This isn't a good thing by any means I enjoy going there and walleye & smallmouth fishing but I want them to find the real cause instead of just saying it is purely the cause of phosphate runoff.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ted Arneson wrote 2 years 30 weeks ago

Oh it sure is - check out a couple of photos from the lake this year, that were posted on TheRockyRiver.com's Facebook page:

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/310208_171625489591994_11...

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/296474_171625309592012_11...

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

bmxbiz