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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

May showers, fertilizer lead to early algae bloom

Published Jun. 8, 2009 - The Florida Times-Union
Warm weather after weeks of rain could cause summertime algae blooms to spread across Northeast Florida's rivers and creeks this month.

The slimy green scum is a seasonal feature on the St. Johns, but carries a potential public health concern because the blooms can produce toxins that affect both fish and people.

Runoff from hard rains has made the river darker than normal, which hurts algae by limiting the light it receives, he said.

But that runoff is full of fertilizer and other sources of nitrogen that feeds algae, so big blooms can happen faster.

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