Pond Water Data Collection

On America’s East Coast, fresh-water management faces a unique set of problems. Rather than the clarity issues we face here in the mid-continent, they face “Cyanobacteria” that can be life-threatening to pets and humans. The monitoring and treatment of their freshwater locations require management by local business groups and volunteer organizations.

From the Association to Preserve Cape Cod “Cyanobacteria are commonly found in the phytoplankton community of aquatic ecosystems. They form the base of the food web of freshwater ponds and streams that flow into coastal estuaries and the ocean. The presence of cyanobacteria is natural and important!

However, overabundant cyanobacterial growth (called blooms) and their release of dangerous amounts of cyanotoxins appear to be occurring more frequently. This is due to warming global temperatures and excessive nutrients in our ponds. This excessive growth of cyanobacteria and formation of blooms degrades habitats and damages the environment. Exposure to cyanotoxins can have serious health implications for wildlife, humans, and pets.

In spring of 2017, APCC initiated a program of monitoring in response to apparent gaps in town and state capacity to monitor freshwater ponds across Cape Cod for cyanobacteria with sufficient frequency to protect public health.” Read more about their work here.

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