29 June 2011

Early morning in the Karoo, South Africa (Photo: Bill Harding)

CyanoAlert has had a couple of quiet days as I have been away working in the very cold Karoo (Google it, its a fascinating place).

Scientific interest into the possible links between cyanobacteria and motor neuron disease (MND) continue to gain momentum with a new publication from Dartmouth University.

The American summer continues to warm up.  Oregon (Roseburg) veterinarians are warning dog owners that blue-green algae blooms in lakes, ponds and rivers are a potential hazard as we get into the summer.  Lost Creek Lake, also in Oregon, has had an Alert Level posted.  Scathing criticism was leveled Thursday at the South Florida Water Management District for what environmental, tourism and political officials called its bias toward agriculture and failure to release fresh water to help the static, scum-filled Caloosahatchee River.  See other concerns about how algae could damage economics in South Florida.  Toxic algal blooms have not happened yet but are predicted for Lake Erie.

The Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality recommends avoiding contact with the water at Bernice State Park on Grand Lake this summer. This comes after the GRDA’s lab confirmed the discovery of blue green algae in the water near the park.

On June 22, Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) Secretary Robin Jennison issued Emergency Secretary Order closing some recreational access to the waters and beach areas of Meade State Park, in Meade County. A few days earlier, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) had found a blue-green algae bloom in Meade State Fishing Lake at the park. Direct water contact activities such as swimming and wading are prohibited until further notice.  The Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued a warning Thursday that elevated concentrations of toxic blue-green algae have been detected at Logan City Lake in Phillips County.  Residents around Lake Elkhorn are concerned about hiccups in restoration activities to reduce algal problems.

The algal bloom advisory continues for two of Buckeye Lake’s beaches, but not for the beach with the highest microcystin level, according to a Friday update from multiple state departments.

CyanoAlert has reported from Peterborough (not the UK) County before, with a new alert for Big Bald Lake.  In the UK, however, cyanobacteria threaten to upset the annual Norwich triathlon.

Finally, in a new report from Wisconsin, twenty-five farm families have entered into contracts with Dane County to implement conservation practices intended to reduce the amount of pollution flowing into area lakes.  This comes at a time when the USEPA is struggling to implement nutrient reduction measures.

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