By Tricia Bell, Multimedia Video Journalist - bio | email
CELINA, OHIO -
In 2009, toxic blooms of algae were discovered on Grand Lake St. Marys. The blooms are fed by nutrients which run off of fields, septic tanks, and treated lawns and eventually flow into the lake. Several efforts are underway to reduce the high level of nutrients in the water. Now, farmers are sharing their efforts with the director of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
"The majority of farmers are trying real hard," said Mark Dahlinghaus.
The Dahlinghaus family farm is part of the Grand Lake Watershed. Mark Dahlinghaus took ODNR Director Jim Zehringer on a tour of some of the recent upgrades on his farm.
"So, we're looking at some cover crops, some feed lots, filter strips, variable rate technology. All good things that keep the nutrients on the land," said Zehringer.
While farms are major piece of the solution, the effort to improve water quality at Grand Lake is much more broad.
"It's a multifaceted approach. We have a lot of different things going on at the same time. One is agriculture. Treating the lake is another. So, we're all working together," said Zehringer.
While Tuesday's tour focused on agriculture, other efforts should also be highlighted. Dahlinghaus recently toured the wetlands constructed along the lake.
"I went on a boat, and they showed me the treatment train. I was impressed," said Dahlinghaus.