A new way of treating blue-green algae blooms, which have plagued Marion County Lake and Marion Reservoir for almost a decade, is being tested on a small scale in Geary County.
An all-too-familiar algae warning for the county lake was renewed Thursday, as was the reservoir’s less serious algae watch. Status of both lakes is updated weekly.
Contractors hired by Kansas Department of Health and Environment are testing the effectiveness of precision application of an algaecide based on hydrogen peroxide at Milford Gathering Pound, with a surface area of 100 acres.
That’s one-third the size of the county lake. At normal levels, the reservoir is much larger, 6,160 acres.
Peroxide-based algaecides can provide rapid, targeted management of algae blooms with negligible effects on desirable plants, fish and other aquatic life, KDHE says.
Samples are being collected before and after each treatment to evaluate performance as the state continues to look for affordable tools to reduce algae blooms.
During algae warnings:
- Humans, pets, and livestock should not drink lake water or eat dried algae.
- Skin contacting lake water should be washed with clean water as soon as possible.
- Fish are safe to eat if rinsed with clean water and only the fillet is consumed.
- Areas of visible algae accumulation should be avoided.
Marion County Lake has been under a watch or warning every week since May 1. Marion Reservoir has been under a watch or warning nearly every week during that time.