Date of Award
Lisa R. Moore
Cyanobacterial blooms, like algal blooms, are a much studied phenomena; and many triggers that cause these blooms are well understood. Usually, excess nutrients (such as soluble nitrogen or phosphate) are prerequisite for a bloom to occur. Since 2013, annual summer cyanobacterial blooms have been observed at Highland Lake (HL), located in Cumberland County, Maine. Data going back more than 15 years, collected by the Highland Lake Association, shows this is a new phenomenon in this body of water. Other investigators have shown HL water chemistry to have high aluminum to phosphorous and aluminum to iron ratios. These metals bind phosphate making it unavailable to most microbes, decreasing the probability a bloom will occur. This raises the questions of what particular cyanobacteria are present, and the source of phosphate.
Lambeth, William; Henson, Rachel; and Morrison, Michael, "Cyanobacterial Blooms in Highland Lake, ME" (2017). Thinking Matters. 122.