All The Lake Protective Associations are working with the DNR, the Iowa Legislature and Governor Branstad who have appropriated $1,000,000,000 to clean up the Center Lakes blue-green algae, that can be toxic in some situations.
The article below is courtesy of Explore Okoboji. Click here for their version with sound clips.
Mon 6-30-2014 (Wahpeton)– Officials say a form of blue-green algae that can be toxic in high enough concentrations has been detected in some of the Iowa Great Lakes. Dr. Kalina Manoylov is an Associate Professor with the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences at Georgia College who is among the staff of scientists this year at Lakeside Laboratory on West Lake Okoboji. She says the algae has been detected in Center Lake, Upper and Lower Gar, and Lake Minnewashta. She says the highest levels so far have been found in Center Lake.
“Cyanna bacteria potentially can produce toxins and if anybody gets symptoms like headache, vomiting, and have been exposed to the lake, when they go to the doctor please tell them that you’ve been at the lake because this is one area that we’re working very hard to inform people to make symptoms related with aquatic environments and then maybe we’ll have some awareness about the toxins. But yes, toxins can be very dangerous to humans.”
Dr. Manoylov offers this advice on whether or not it’s safe to swim in a lake.
“If you are knee high in water and the water is green and you cannot see your toes, you should not get into this water. Do not allow children, do not allow pets to get in the water. Basically if the water is so green and you cannot see your toes when you’re knee high at the edge of a lake, just don’t go in there. That means there is a bloom. Is it toxic or not we just don’t know.”
Dr. Manoylov says algae blooms, some of them heavy, are likely to occur over the next several days and weeks on most area lakes.