Cyanobacteria monitoring officially began last week for the 2022 season! It’s been wonderful to connect with new and returning monitors through email, phone, our virtual training sessions, in-person visits, and your reporting! If you haven’t attended a 2022 monitor training session yet (we’re hosting another training on 7/6/22 from 9:00 AM to noon), please sign up here. We are excited to have such a great crew of community scientists assessing water conditions!
Thanks again for being part of the Lake Champlain Committee’s community science cyanobacteria monitoring team! Please scroll on through this email for your reporting links, username and password, and to view photos of clean water conditions at Lake Champlain’s Button Bay, Oakledge Park, North Beach, and Valcour Island. Check out a cool monitor innovation for water sampling without getting wet and ingredients for a bloom.
Thank you for your patience in dealing with reporting issues when the VT Dept. of Health (VDH) cyanobacteria tracker had glitches last weekend. Many people filed using LCC’s reporting form which meant we had to individually upload lots of reports and photos once the tracker was working again. As a consequence, we’re behind in sending out our weekly emails. Please scroll through this email for reporting resources, LCC open house, and monitor training information, and visuals of where cyanobacteria exist, bottled blooms, Lake Carmi cyanobacteria close-ups, and clear water at Valcour Island and Spring Lake.
Most of the week was sunny, hot, calm, and humid and blooms took off in many Lake Champlain locations as well as at Lake Carmi. Heat waves are known to promote cyanobacteria blooms in waterways by increasing thermal stratification, allowing cyanobacteria to remain in warm and well-lit surface waters, and encouraging release of phosphorus from lake sediments in shallow lakes. Please keep this in mind during the reporting season and feel free to check your site(s) more frequently during hot weather conditions.
Conditions at Lake Champlain and inland Vermont waterways were overall much improved from the previous week. Continued warm weather along with the influx of nutrients from periodic storms could trigger additional cyanobacteria blooms so check the water carefully during the week and feel free to file additional reports regardless of the conditions you encounter.
Bloom reports for the week were restricted to the Central Main Lake, St. Albans Bay, and Missisquoi Bay on Lake Champlain and to Knapp Pond and Lake Carmi for Vermont inland lakes.
Scroll through this email to see what influences the color variance of blooms, and view pictures of the turquoise splotches of cyanobacteria in Knapp Pond in Cavendish VT, a bubbling brew of a bloom on the Winooski River’s Derway Cove inlet, and blooms that swirled around Lake Champlain’s St. Albans Bay Park for much of the week.
Happily, Central Main Lake was bloom-free during week 8 of monitoring but blooms persisted in sections of St. Albans Bay and Missisquoi Bay on Lake Champlain and Lake Carmi. After a week of bloom-free reports, cyanobacteria was observed again on Lake Memphremagog.
If you’ve missed recent weekly emails you can find them at this link on the Lake Champlain Committee (LCC) website. They’re worth checking out for the compilation of reporting results, monitoring tips, and visuals of blooms witnessed during the 2022 season.
Happy end of August! As we move towards September, please remember that blooms can still happen as summer wanes which is why we are only about half way through the monitoring season. Blooms have been witnessed through November in our region during past years and the next few months can be very active periods for blooms.
Several monitors reported odd gelatinous globules in the water at several sites in Lake Champlain’s Inland Sea during week 11 of monitoring. Happily, they took samples and photographs and shared the details with us and our partner Dr. Ana Morales-Williams at the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory. The samples turned out to be Calothrix sp. – a benthic filamentous cyanobacteria.
Blooms continued into Week 12 of the monitoring season. You can see visuals of some of them from Lake Memphremagog, Lake Morey, Tinmouth Pond, Shelburne Pond and Lake Champlain’s Arnold Bay and Valcour Island, and Lake Champlain’s Keeler Bay. You’ll also find photos illustrating blue-green blues and the recreational impact of cyanobacteria. Click here to access monitor reports and photos from earlier in the season.
While the weather cooled during Week 13 of monitoring, blooms continued in several lakes or bays where they were present previously and showed up in some new locations. On Lake Champlain, high alert conditions were restricted to nutrient-rich St. Albans Bay but there were low alerts in the Inland Sea, Malletts Bay, Main Lake North, and Main Lake South.
Week 14 of monitoring brought cooler weather, fewer sightings of cyanobacteria, but also far fewer monitors to report them. High alert blooms continued in parts of St. Albans Bay, Lake Carmi, and Lake Morey which have all had persistent blooms during the last weeks or months.
Good water conditions dominated monitoring reports during week 15 but blooms showed up in a few Lake Champlain locations as well as several inland lakes. Scroll down to see clear water at Alburgh Dunes State Park, and Graveyard Point on Lake Champlain; blooms at Lake Carmi, Lake Memphremagog, Shelburne Pond, Burlington beaches, and St. Albans Bay; and learn how to differentiate cyanobacteria from duckweed.
Good water conditions dominated monitoring reports for the second week in a row since we moved into the fall season but cyanobacteria blooms continued to show their colors in areas of Lake Champlain and several inland lakes.
Good water conditions dominated monitoring reports for the third full week of fall but there are far fewer monitors reporting this time of year on Lake Champlain and inland lakes. This week’s photos don’t show any cyanobacteria but scroll down to see what monitors observed during week 17 including...
Only a scattering of monitoring reports are still coming in as we move into stick season but all that do provide important data on water conditions. Lake Champlain was bloom-free for the second fall week in a row. The lone sighting of cyanobacteria came from Lake Iroquois but we only had reports from four inland lakes.Click here for further details of Week 18 – October 16 thru 22, 2022 water conditions.
Site coverage is scant this time of year but all 47 reports from Lake Champlain received during week 19 were of good conditions. For inland lakes, Lake Carmi had a low alert bloom and Joe’s Pond had a high alert. The latter covered a wide swath of shoreline but was short-lived. Blooms can still happen late in the season so please continue to report if you’re still in the area.
The 2022 cyanobacteria monitoring season has come to a close for LCC monitors and partners. Thank you for your dedicated efforts to check conditions in wind, rain, sleet, and sun! Monitors collectively filed over 2,500 reports during this year’s 20-week season. We greatly appreciate your efforts and the lake love you bring to this work!