Algal Blooms in Lakes and How to Control Them

During the dog-days of summer, conditions are just right to cause blue-green algae to grow very quickly, resulting in algal blooms in lakes. These blooms can create a noxious smell, discolored water and can even sometimes kill fish, which die when unable to get enough oxygen from the algae-dominated water. Combine this in some cases with an abundance of phosphorus from agricultural runoff, sewage treatment plants, lawn fertilizer, water treatment plants, and septic systems, and more algal blooms can occur in lakes and ponds.

Algae are important members of the food webs of our lakes and rivers. Through photosynthesis, algae make carbohydrates and oxygen from carbon dioxide and water. Algae (and their carbohydrates) are then eaten by zooplankton, insects, snails, and other organisms that are the base of all aquatic food systems. One can see that in proper balance they are an important part of a lake’s healthy ecosystem, but when conditions are right this careful balance can be thrown off.

There are many ways to help control algal blooms in a lake or pond using safe and natural algaecide treatments to bring back the balance of nutrients, kill and keep algae in check, and reduce phosphorus levels. There are pond dyes available that not only keep the sun from being a nutrient source for algae but also increase the healthy appearance of your pond’s water.

We at Lake Restoration recommend a combination of watershed management to reduce the amount of runoff that goes into your lake or pond as well as the use of a pond algaecide. Once you’ve got the level of algae under control with an algaecide you can slow the rate of its regrowth by using an algae control kit like Mizzen®. This kit reduces the nutrients available to algae, leading to a slowing of regrowth of algal blooms in lakes.

Here are some helpful tips for how to control algal blooms using our Mizzen® product:

Application Tips:

• For recurrent algae blooms in your pond or lake, we recommend that you re-apply every two to three weeks.

• For severe algae blooms, avoid harmful oxygen depletion by staggering applications; apply the treatment to one half or one third of the area at a time. Allow 10 – 14 days between applications.

• If you have large mats of algae break them up before applying an algaecide.

• Apply Mizzen® early in the year when algae first appears, and when the water temperatures are above 60° Fahrenheit.

If you have any questions about algae control, please feel free to call us at: 1-877-428-8898.