Green algae spotted at Franklin Lock in Alva

Published: February 8, 2019 4:43 PM EST
Updated: February 9, 2019 10:18 AM EST

Fears are growing once again about algae in the Caloosahatchee River.

WINK News spotted green algae at the W.P. Franklin Lock and Dam in Alva Friday, where algae build up is mainly seen at the south end of the lock.

“A friend had said a couple weeks ago that there was algae out here,” Connie Langmann said. “And I was hoping he was wrong, and I happen to be in this area, so I came by to check out the locks, and … it’s there.”

The sighting concerns John Cassani, a clean water activist.

“What concerns me most is another consecutive year of these harmful algal blooms,” Cassani said. “The red tide event hasn’t completely diminished, so it’s still out there to some degree.”

People at the lock point at different causes for the return of green algae in the water.

“Hard equation because the population and tourists and everything else bring money into the state, but it also brings other problems,” John Lewis said.

Many people also agree the water releases made by the state’s U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at lake Okeechobee last week contributed to the increase in green algae in the waters.

“You are going to get more nutrients in the water,” Lewis said.

The warm temperatures in the recent forecast are also a believed contributor.

“It goes along with hot temperatures and more nutrients being in the lakes,” Lewis said.

The army corps said this past January was one of the wetter months on record, which caused increased lake levels. That is the main cause for current releases.

“I don’t think it’s all of a sudden coming back. I think it’s been here probably somewhere in the canals and creeks, shoved in land,” Langmann said. “Hopefully the changes that are happening in Tallahassee will prevent these things.”

Trust WINK News to update you on these water quality issues.