Enough Hype - Questions Readers have on the Algae Bloom – What you really need to Know!

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We've have had several news agencies hypeing the Lake Hopatcong Algae Bloom situation, so Hopatcong Lake Regional News is taking a different approach by answeingr our readers’ questions directly , and trying to separate hype from fact.

Q1. The picture I’m seeing in the media has the entire lake in green. How is that possible?

It's not possible, the picture was modified with a higher green spectrum, this is fake news.

Q2. How did this happen, and what are the causes?

Though officials don’t know for sure, they suspect the additional blooms formed as a result of heavy rain that carried nutrient-laden stormwater into the lake followed by warm temperatures.

Q3. Where are the Algae Blooms growing, and how can I recognize them?

Normally the Algae Blooms are close to shore line where the water is warmer, and ideal for their growth. You can identify them as a greenish color on the water.

Cyanobacteria blooms are usually bright green, but can also appear as spilled paint, “pea soup,” or as having a thick coating or “mat” on the surface, the DEP said. These dangerous blooms can often be confused for typical algae bloom.

Q4. Why am I just hearing about this this year, what is wrong with Lake Hopatcong?

There is nothing wrong with Lake Hopatcong, this is happening in all of our near-by lakes and even across the New Jersey Shore. The Algae Bloom comes from several man-made issues, combined with nature.

Q5. How long will this Last, and when can I go back into the water?

Harmful algal blooms will remain as long as there are favorable conditions, including warmth, sunlight and low flow rates. Blooms can last from weeks to months and it is difficult to predict when they will clear. Side Note: In the past (2018 season) they only lasted a few weeks.

Q6. Is Lake Hopatcong Shut Down? What about Boaters?

No Lake Hopatcong is not shut down, while it is HIGHLY RECOMMENED that you limit your contact with the water. People are free to still use the lake, and just understand the risk that you under as you use the lake.

Q7. Can I swim in the middle of the lake?

While not recommended, you could swim in the middle of the lake and your risk of exposure is less than the shoreline.

Q8. Can I Fish on Lake Hopatcong?

Ideally No… But Yes, you can fish, but anything you have caught should be released, as the fish may be contaminated. Also, realize by catching the fish in the normal shallow water, means that they may have the Algae on their outer scales. So be careful!

Q9. How will this affect the Fireworks on Friday?

It has not effected the Fireworks scheduled for Friday Night.

Q10. What other Major Lake Events have NOT been Cancelled?

  • The Beach Blast in Mount Arlington is still on
  • The Veterans Cruise is still on

Q10. Can I Water Ski on Lake Hopatcong?

While not recommended, you could water ski in the middle of the lake knowing that any time the skier or members in the boat could come in contact with the affected water.

Q11. What else should I not do on Lake Hopatcong?

  • No Swimming
  • No Water Skiing
  • No Tubing
  • No Kayaking
  • Limit Boating
  • Limit Fishing

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