First, don’t panic. There is no reason to cancel parties, family outings or stop skiing, tubing, swimming or fishing.
As Ohio State Parks Chief David Payne said Wednesday morning, “This lake and beautiful state park is open for business. Come out and enjoy this park.”
None of the now nearly 30 samples tested for microcystins have exceeded the World Health Organization safe recreation threshold of 20 parts per billion. Just two have exceeded Ohio’s new much more conservative threshold of 6 parts per billion.
Use common sense. Keep children, pets and yourself out of any surface scum.
There is strength in numbers. Join efforts to maintain and improve Buckeye Lake’s water quality. You can join Buckeye Lake for Tomorrow for as little as $15 per year. You’ll find a membership application at www.buckeyelakefortomorrow.org. Likewise, join and support the efforts of the Buckeye Lake Area Civic Association. Membership is just $10 per year and you’ll find more information at www.buckeyelakecivic.org
Both organizations have numerous opportunities for volunteers to help make Buckeye Lake a better place to live and visit. For example, this weekend you can participate in the first ever Buckeye Lake Carp Fest. Help Buckeye Lake for Tomorrow reduce our carp population which contributes to the growth of algae by re-suspending the phosphorus in the sediment, making it available to help algae grow. If you would rather not fish, your cash donations will help rebuild the prize kitty for next year’s Carp Fest.
Encourage friends and family members to fish for carp year round and don’t toss them back in the lake. Bury them in a garden or flower bed where they will help something beneficial grow. Please don’t feed the carp off your docks or at lakeside restaurants. That food is helping fuel the carp population explosion.
If you live along the water, please use a phosphorus-free lawn fertilizer or ask your lawn service to use a phosphorus-free mixture. They are readily available. Please don’t dump grass clippings, leaves or pet droppings into the lake. All three contribute nutrients for algae growth.
Buckeye Lake is a great place to live and visit. With your help, we can keep it that way and make it even better.