Lake Status Update | September 16, 2016

Reported by Mike Hanson

At the recent Town Meeting regarding the lake conditions, a request was made to include the measurement numbers when we report the test results.  In order assist everyone with the interpretation of the numbers, I am including the comment from our testing firm, Aquatic Environments, regarding guidelines for the results:

“I have not been able to find where Pennsylvania or Maryland have established recreational water guidance or action levels for microcystin.  Ohio has established levels.  For levels above 6 µg/L, they have a Public Health Advisory PHA: swimming and wading are not recommended, water should not be swallowed and surface scum should be avoided.  For levels above 20 µg/L, they have a No Contact Advisory NCA: recommend the public avoid all contact with the water. The levels established by Ohio are similar with those of other states that have established action levels.”

The result for the samples taken on Monday September 12 were 7.404 µg/L for the well mixed middle of the lake and 200.810 µg/L for the boat dock cove.  Our last test results for samples taken on August 29th were 27.366 µg/L for the middle of the lake and 25.368 µg/L for the boat dock cove.  As you can see we have improvement in the middle of the lake results, but a deterioration in the cove results.  Lake Savers was asked to assist in interpreting these results as follows:

“The readings affirm the fact that areas that accumulated surface scums are very likely to have high levels of microcystin.  As the algae dies and reduces in the middle of the lake, it is common for these dead cells to be blown together by wind action and collect in coves. Cooler weather will continue to result in improvements in both the main lake and the coves.  As discussed at the Town Meeting, a comprehensive plan is being developed to prevent the bloom conditions that cause elevated microcystin levels.”

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