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Dry, hot conditions lead to more blue green algae in Southwest Florida

"It is perfect for them, they like it hot since they are bacteria and the hotter, the better"
Posted at 2:31 PM, May 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-26 14:38:47-04

SOUTHWEST, Fla. — Blue green algae is rearing it’s slimy head again across parts of SWFL and the reason is tied to our hot, dry weather.

Professor Barry Rosen from The Water School at FGCU, says “It is perfect for them, they like it hot since they are bacteria and the hotter, the better”.

He adds that since we haven’t had much rain, the streams and canals aren’t flowing much which is another thing they like. The bacteria is always in the water but because our weather has been so hot and dry, they are showing up and blooming a bit early this year.

Rosen says we can’t solely blame Lake Okeechobee for causing it. “They are all over the canal system and it’s a long way from Lake Okeechobee. There’s lots of nutrients that flow off of the local water sheds, lawns, and farm fields”.

The coming wet season could help us out a bit. Rosen adds that “It’s going to be more turbulent, they’ll be mixed more and that is something they don’t like.”