The State has posted signs at Northwest Creek warning people not to swim when algae blooms are visible and to keep children and pets away. Some Kent Island homeowners are spending another summer looking at but staying away from the lake beside which their homes are built because the water is brimming with toxic blue-green algae, which can sicken people and even kill pets if ingested. Long ago, Northwest Creek was a tidal tributary of the Chesapeake Bay but over time its opening to the bay has filled in or been blocked, converting the creek to a lake. Blue-green algae, which is really cyanobacteria, infests it and a handful of other ponds, lakes and fresh-water coves on the Eastern Shore. Feeding on nutrients seeping into the water from farms, lawns and septic systems, the algae comes back every year or so and has proven particularly resistant to efforts to stamp it out. After saying for years that the toxic algae in Northwest Creek is the residents' problem, state officials are now looking to see what might be done to ease the recurring problems there.
Timothy B. Wheeler, Baltimore Sun
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