It’s that time of the year when we need to be on the look out for blue green algae. Algae can naturally produce large blooms that can then die suddenly in a boom and bust cycle in late summer and fall. The timing of these cycles is related to climate, weather, water conditions, and species and can vary from year to year.
( Video developed by the Wisconsin DNR showing excellent examples of Blue Green Algae)
Many species of blue-green algae have evolved to be able to control their buoyancy as the availability of light and nutrients change with the time of day and local weather conditions. At night, when there is no light, cells are unable to adjust their buoyancy and often float to the surface, forming a surface scum. So this scum can literally appear overnight and may linger until wind and waves scatter the cells throughout the water body.
Presently there have been numerous Blue Green Algal sightings around he Bay since Sunday. The SUNY ESF crews are in the field and have been sampling for toxicity.
Although not all blooms are toxic, they are unsightly. Please exercise caution. If you notice anything resembling an algal bloom please refrain from wading, swimming, or drinking the water and keep all pets out of the water. Boiling water will not remove toxins.
Take a proactive approach:
- rake up any weeds and other debris from the shoreline, especially corners or areas where water can stagnate.
- use a circulating pump to move the water – most marinas can order these pumps if needed.
- do not mow close to shore and remove all clippings
- plant and maintain vegetative buffer strips along shorelines
- use lawn fertilizers only where truly needed
If you believe you have a localized area where there is suspect Blue Green Algae, please call Cathy Comfort at Wayne County Soil and Water *315-946-4136 M-F 8-4 p.m. and provide your name, address, phone #, and an email address. Also, the site location in relation to a primary road and address if possible where you believe to have seen the algae.
The Wayne County Health department has also set up a number to report algal blooms 24/7. *315-500-4161
As you know there are studies underway to learn more about the algal blooms in hopes to find a mitigation solution.
Save Our Sodus will continue to report the weekly toxin sample results or when they become available.
Please feel free to contact us at any time at email@example.com
* all information reported is being entered into a database, not all sites can be visually inspected or tested.