EXPLAINER: BGA bloom in Grand Lake’s Horse Creek area; GRDA advise public to use caution

Joplin News First

Google Maps, Horse Creek Cove, Grand Lake O’ The Cherokees, Delaware County, Oklahoma.

GRAND LAKE O’ THE CHEROKEES — The Grand River Dam Authority is reporting that its most recent monitoring has confirmed there continues to be the presence of a blue green algae (BGA) bloom in Grand Lake’s Horse Creek area. Due to the current conditions, GRDA continues to advise the public to use extra precaution in this area of the lake as the bloom can concentrate as it is pushed by the wind and waves.

Most recent testing by GRDA shows the Horse Creek bloom varying in toxin levels from 5 micrograms per liter (ug/l) to >20 ug/l. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidelines, published in 2019, recommend no primary body contact with the water when microcystin concentration produced by the BGA is greater than 8 micrograms per liter (>8ug/l).  The areas of highest toxin are scums that can form quickly and tend to congregate along shorelines and docks.

HORSE CREEK IS LOCATED SOUTH OF AFTON, OKLAHOMA, IN DELAWARE COUNTY. THE NEOSHO RIVER FLOWS INTO GRAND LAKE O’ THE CHEROKEES AT THIS POINT. CLICK TO VIEW LARGER MAP.

At this time, GRDA’s ongoing monitoring suggests that the Horse Creek bloom remains the primary area of concern and will continue to monitor for additional blooms throughout the lake.

Again, we want the public to be aware that the overwhelming majority of Grand Lake does not show any signs of BGA and is ready for visitors to come and enjoy,” said GRDA Vice President of Corporate Communications Justin Alberty. “However, we are continuing with our daily testing and surveys all across the lake because conditions can change rapidly.”

BGA may resemble thick pea soup, green paint or bluish, brownish or reddish-green paint. When BGA washes up on shore, it can form a thick mat on the beach. BGA can reproduce rapidly in water bodies with adequate amounts of sunlight and nutrients such as phosphorous and nitrogen. It is recommended that individuals avoid swimming or participating in water recreational activities in areas where the water is discolored or where you see foam, scum or mats of algae on the water.

If you see a BGA bloom, ODEQ recommends that you avoid all contact with the water, keep your pets and livestock away from the water and immediately contact ODEQ at (800) 522 0206 or GRDA at (918) 256 0911. Source: GRDA.

The Grand River Dam Authority is reporting that its most recent monitoring has confirmed there continues to be the…

Posted by Grand River Dam Authority on Wednesday, June 23, 2021
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