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Toxic Algae Blooms, Explained

Toxic algae is in the news again, so it's a good time to learn as much as possible about the environmental threat that is likely to be a reoccurring theme in the era of climate change.
August 17, 2019, 11am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Maumee River
NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory

"In recent days, three pet dogs in North Carolina and another in Georgia died after swimming in water contaminated with toxic organisms," reports Stephanie De Marco to begin an explainer post into the causes of this toxic risk.

"Warm temperatures and an influx of nutrients from agricultural runoff or other sources can prompt toxic algae and bacteria to grow out of control," according to the article. One detail worth noting is that the algae isn't really algae at all, it's "cyanobacteria, bacterial cells that get their energy from photosynthesis."

As for how people can reduce the risk for themselves and their pets, the article suggests being observant, not swallowing the water, and not fishing.

Full Story:
Published on Wednesday, August 14, 2019 in Los Angeles Times
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