Save Our Sodus

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We are all partners in water quality

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Dogs and Harmful Algal Blooms

We have recently had closings of some nearby Finger Lakes to all types of recreational use because of HABs and their related microcystin toxins. Upstream of Lake Ontario, western Lake Erie is suffering from a major HAB outbreak that has caused cities (e.g.: Toledo) to warn residents that they should not consume, cook or even bathe with water from the public water system. Basically they told the public not to use public water, period. Levels of toxins exceeded the World Health Organization’s (WHO) drinking water standard of one (1) part per billion (ppb). Toxin contaminated water cannot be made safe by boiling, chlorination or filtration.

Sodus Bay has had essentially no HAB outbreaks this year and toxicity levels, so far, are un-detectable at <0.1 ppb. The following information is preemptory and an attempt to inform you before the need to ask questions arises. One can safely assume that most guidelines for dogs are applicable to humans.   Dogs & Habs Fact sheet



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Continued SOS Vigilence

The following article, by Ed Leroux, not only highlights the important content of the NYSFOLA Annual Conference but serves to point out the scope of SOS involvement in matters of importance to each of us.  Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) are merely an indication of the borderline eutrophic state of the bay.  Their visual impact and potential toxicity can have a devastating impact on property values and overall economic viability of the Sodus Bay area.  We are fortunate this season that there have been only trace (1) confirmed sightings and zero (0) instances of toxicity. Please take a few minutes to read the entire  report and view the related links.  The “Sodus Bay Trends in Water Quality Report” is a condensed summary of pertinent trends since the 2010 Blue-Green outbreak that turned off activity on the bay following the August 27th D & C article.  My hope is twofold: 1. that this will be informational to those who are new to the bay and to SOS and 2. that this will help the rest of us ward off complacency.  I will speak of vigilance in future articles.

Dave Scudder, President

31st NYSFOLA Annual Conference

“Celebrating Lake Stewardship”

Ed Leroux

SOS was represented in two ways at the annual New York State Federation of Lake Associations  (NYSFOLA) conference held in Hamilton NY on May 2-4 this year.  As attendees and as presenters, Dave Scudder and Ed Leroux participated in this year’s conference which included such topics as Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB’s), Invasive Species, Lake Management “Toolbox” and Dam Safety.  The program included both concurrent sessions and workshops as well as CSLAP (water sampling) training for new volunteers.  SOS’ presentation was part of the HAB session on Saturday morning.  Greg Boyer (SUNY-ESF) started the session with a tutorial on HAB’s followed by our presentation that was a recap of our efforts and activities over the past several years.  This was followed by Scott Kishbaugh, Chief, NYS DEC Statewide Monitoring Department who covered the results of studies of eight NYS lakes.

What did we learn? Continue Reading →

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First Invasive Species Awareness Week Announced


Gov. Cuomo’s announcement of the first Invasive Species Awareness Week is accompanied by a well written, comprehensive piece on invasive species. Please take the time to read it. It is all that you need to know regarding the subject unless you are intimately involved with some particular aspect of one or more invasives. 


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Algal Sample Drop Off

Algal Sample Drop-Off Established at Sodus Point Village Hall

A plastic “milk” crate has been labeled and placed outside the entrance to the Sodus Point Village Hall to hold algal samples. Click on the following link to access the “Request for Sample Analysis” form which must accompany each sample. [This form also includes all the guidelines for obtaining and submitting a sample.]  This form is also available in the collection crate, at the Village Offices during normal business hours, and will remain available on this website under the “Toxicity Reports 2014″ tab at the top of the page.

Samples dropped off on Tuesday will be picked up on Wednesday.  Samples will be identified and, when appropriate, analyzed for toxicity, with the results reported as requested on the form.  This seasonal public service is provided by SUNY-ESF in conjunction with their ongoing Sodus Bay water quality sampling and testing.

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Sodus Bay: No Blooms Reported; None Found

Sodus Bay: No Blooms Reported; None Found


Due to the holiday this Friday, Dr. Greg Boyer and his associates have gone to extraordinary efforts to make algal bloom information available in a timely fashion for this weekend. Let me emphasize: no blooms were reported by citizens and none were found by the SUNY-ESF team of researchers. Toxicity levels of water samples that were taken around the bay all showed only “Minimal Toxicity” – well within WHO drinking water standards. Use the following link to view full report: Sodus Bay 070214

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Blue-Green algae toxicity reports running late but bring good news:

The most recent b/g toxicity report indicates that the three samples taken around the bay on 6/25 indicated low levels of b/g algae and minimal toxicity.  A citizen sample from the N/E corner of Leroy Island taken on 6/19 from an apparent bloom indicated Anabaena and minimal toxicity.  All four samples were well within the World Health Organization’s drinking water standards. Sodus Bay 062714

SOS Expo. door prize awarded:

The Seaweeder weed rake donated by Bill Kramer and available at both Wolcott Building Supply and at has been delivered to lucky winner Miriam Derivan of Sodus Point.

SOS Expo. vendors make donation to SOS:

Each of the four major vendors at the Citizen Self Help Expo. chose to donate their $100.00, refundable deposit to SOS for the furtherance of its work.  They have been appropriately thanked and the SOS mission advanced.  They were well prepared for the myriad questions they received.

        • Aqua Cleaner Environmental, Inc.
        • Consolidated Treatment Systems, Inc.
        • Norweco, Inc./ Randall Excavating
        • Onsite Sales & Service



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Is It Blue/Green Algae???

Algae Identification at Expo on Saturday

June 21, 2014

Fuerst Field, Greig Street, Sodus Point

9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. 

Is It Blue/Green?

Bring your water sample to the Expo!


There have been reports of algae blooms on both the east and west sides of the bay over the last couple of days.  I have one in front of my house as I write this.

algal bloom 6-19-2014

water sample 4I grabbed the required 500 ml sample (about 2 cups) in a spent water bottle, skimming it off the surface with a gloved hand.

I then placed a drop on a microscope slide and viewed it at 20X magnification using SOS’s new microscope.  It is B/G algae and to my untrained eye it appears to be Anabaena, a simple multicellular photosynthetic cyanobacterium.  I have no means to determine if it is toxic or not.


Bring your water sample to the SOS Expo and ask the expert, Dr. Greg Boyer.

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Featured at the Expo

Barrier beach properties and small lots often require unconventional, state-of-the-art, solutions to onsite wastewater treatment.  A facet of the SOS Self Help Expo, Saturday, June 21st, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. will be of particular interest to those waterfront property owners whose properties are terrestrially challenged in this regard.  Design engineers, manufacturers and installers of these systems will be available to answer your questions.

The Town of Huron has approved legislation that permits the use of these systems in situations where traditional onsite wastewater treatment systems were previously ineffective or not allowed.  These systems represent an effective means of protecting the waters of Sodus Bay from household generated pathogens and some nutrient loading.

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Plan 2014


The following comments were posted today by Daniel P. Barletta of the Lake Ontario Riparian Alliance as issue 29 of his publication, “The Leveler”.

Two points are worth noting.

The first is that the International St. Lawrence River Board Of Control (ISLRBC), in any form, has relatively little control over the level of Lake Ontario given the constraints under which they must work.

The second pertains to the statement:  We, at LORA, have learned that the International Joint Commission will be holding a web based briefing of their proposed plan 2014 which they are sending to the governments for approval prior to implementing this defective plan.  The briefing will be next week on June 17, 2014.”

This could be another false start by the IJC or the real deal. Stay tuned and we’ll do our best to communicate the latest information as it becomes available.

David Scudder


From Dan Barletta:

Dear neighbors and elected officials representing the affected people along the shore of Lake Ontario,
We, at LORA, have learned that the International Joint Commission will be holding a web based briefing of their proposed plan 2014 which they are sending to the governments for approval prior to implementing this defective plan.  The briefing will be next week on June 17, 2014.
Please review the information presented in the attached newsletter.  We have shown that the Plan’s proposed “Trigger Levels” that were added to plan BV7 to make it Plan 2014 will do nothing to prevent millions in dollars of damages particularly along the south shore of Lake Ontario.
It is time for all representatives to stand up and get this plan killed!


Plan 2014

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