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Blue-green algae

What is it?

Cyanobacteria, more commonly known as blue-green algae, are an ancient group of algae. Although they are most closely related to bacteria, like plants, they are capable of photosynthesis. Their pigmentation gives them their characteristic color. They reproduce rapidly in lakes and ponds where there is shallow water, adequate amounts of sunlight, warm air/water temperatures, calm winds, and sufficient amounts of the nutrients such as phosphorus and nitrogen.

A bloom containing blue-green algae may look like thick pea soup, green paint or green cottage cheese. It may appear bluish, or even brownish or reddish green. It forms a thick mat or foam when it washes ashore. Here are a few pictures taken at Lac des Loups over the last few years.

Algae 1         Algae 2         Algae 3         Algae 4

It takes only a few days for a clear lake or pond to become cloudy and green with algae growth. A bloom can literally appear overnight and it will last until the wind and waves disperse the algae cells in the water.

What to do?

Have your septic system or holding tank tested;

  • Use bio-friendly products;
  • Eliminate the use of phosphates;
  • Wash your boat before reintroducing to the lake from elsewhere.

Québec government web site

You can also visit the Québec government web site concerning blue-green algae.

Eurasian watermilfoil

For a number of years, Lac des Loups was affected by the presence of an exotic aquatic plant called Eurasian watermilfoil which is very invasive.. Some riparians have noticed this plant many years ago.

The presence of this plant has an adverse affect on, not only nautical and tourist activities, but also on the health of the lake. Swimming, fishing and boating as well as the lake environment may be affected, as the density of watermilfoil beds could destroy spawning areas and could influence the oxygen content in the water. For this reason, the Association Lac des Loups (ALDL) requested to have a cartography of the watermilfoil grass beds in order to find solutions to control the proliferation of this plant in the lake. This request was accompanied by an application for a Certificate of Authorization submitted to the Quebec departments «Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques (MDDELCC)» and «Ministère des Forêts de la Faune et des Parcs (MFFP)» in order to install burlap over the Eurasian watermilfoil grass beds.

Here is a picture of what eurasian watermilfoil looks like.

You can find the details in the ABV7 report (french only).