The story below was forwarded to me from a friend in Crystal
River. The community is desperately searching for creative, and
sustainable, solutions to help them deal with the severe algae
problem affecting Kings Bay. Any good ideas?
When times are tuff, the tuff get going
The community is coming together with hard back braking work to
fight back invasive Lyngbya.
On Saturday, the last day of February, Leadership Citrus Class of
2009 again took up tools in a clean up of Hunter Springs Park in
Crystal River. The class partnered and worked with over 30 other
volunteers on the project of cleaning the swimming area and shore
line of one of the most beautiful public swimming areas in Citrus
Volunteers raked Lyngbya from over 2,000 sqft. of swimming area
for a second day. Now more than 5,000 sqft. has been cleaned.
Lyngbya is a blue-green filamentous algae that has infested the
Hunter Springs Spring Run for years. Years of mechanical weed
harvesting by the county has not been able to control the Lyngbya.
Lyngbya destroys water quality and habitat for fish, manatees and
Saturday, people took matters into their own hands, with metal
leaf rakes an sit-on-top kayaks they waded into the water to take
back the Bay. Load after load of lyngbya was piled high onto the
floating barges, then brought to shore. People muscled the Lyngbya
over the seawalls and dumped it onto waiting tarps.
Other volunteers worked on shore to clean the grounds of cig.
butts and litter, power washing the pavilion, exercise equipment
and picnic tables. All hard time consuming work. They will be
ready to start painting next week, weather permitting.
Later as the Lyngbya piled up, volunteers filled wheel barrows and
filled waiting trailers to take the Lyngbya away to be rota-tilled
right away into garden soil. Once removed from the water it can
act like an enriched Peat-Moss to help condition the soil. Two
huge trailer loads of Lyngbya were removed from the swimming
The water is starting to turn blue again and you can see the old
white sand bottom in places now. As the volunteers packed up
their tools at the end of a long day, children swam and played in
the nice clear blue freshly cleaned water, laughing with joy and
shouting thanks to some of the adult volunteers.
There is still more to do so, the next work day is Saturday, early
at 7am to 11am to catch the low tide at 8:31 that day. All future
work days will be half days around low tides. For more info, Art
Jones 727-642-7659 or just show up and register at the volunteer
Jason M. Evans, Ph.D.
Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation
University of Florida
(352) 846-0148 - office
(352) 328-1199 - cell