Sunday, July 14th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Sunday, July 14th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Seeing red-brown lake water? It might be planktothrix

Planktothrix rubescens typically disappears after the winter season, but St. Olaf Lake in Minnesota had a red-brown water color for a few weeks this spring because of the bacteria. The bacteria produces a liver toxin that can cause irritation to skin and can kill pets and livestock if they drink the water. (Photo courtesy of Craig Soupir)

Steve Hagen has lived on St. Olaf Lake in southeastern Minnesota for 17 years and has never had a problem with the lake. It’s always been a place where his children could swim and he could fish without hesitation.
This spring, Hagen noticed a red-brown color in the lake from his backyard. Concerned by the smell and appearance, he contacted the Minnesota DNR for assistance.

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