Protecting Our Water: Growing below the ice - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Protecting Our Water: Growing below the ice

(Source: WTOL) (Source: WTOL)
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  • In the air: Just how germy are those hand dryers in public bathrooms?

    In the air: Just how germy are those hand dryers in public bathrooms?

    Monday, June 25 2018 5:45 PM EDT2018-06-25 21:45:19 GMT
    You probably do it without any thought, put your hands under the dryer after washing your hands at a public restroom. Have you every thought about what exactly is being blown onto your hands? Think about it, every time you flush, fecal bacteria may be shooting up into the air. In a recent national study, scientists say from there, it goes into the hand dryer and onto your hands.  "Just wash my hands, put them under there. Don't really give it no thought," Toledo resid...More >>
    You probably do it without any thought, put your hands under the dryer after washing your hands at a public restroom. Have you every thought about what exactly is being blown onto your hands? Think about it, every time you flush, fecal bacteria may be shooting up into the air. In a recent national study, scientists say from there, it goes into the hand dryer and onto your hands.  "Just wash my hands, put them under there. Don't really give it no thought," Toledo resid...More >>
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    Friday, June 15 2018 6:10 PM EDT2018-06-15 22:10:31 GMT

    Jonathan Sagaser is one of millions of American parents working to send his kids to college. "We had the inspiration to do it early on," he says. Jon and his wife own Sebastiano's Italian restaurant in South Toledo. Their three children, age six, four and two spend a lot of time there as the couple sometimes works 60 to 80 hours a week as small business owners. They plan to pay for half of each of their children's education. "I guess we just want to give them a little b...

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    Jonathan Sagaser is one of millions of American parents working to send his kids to college. "We had the inspiration to do it early on," he says. Jon and his wife own Sebastiano's Italian restaurant in South Toledo. Their three children, age six, four and two spend a lot of time there as the couple sometimes works 60 to 80 hours a week as small business owners. They plan to pay for half of each of their children's education. "I guess we just want to give them a little b...

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  • Day tripping: Have an adventure without busting your budget

    Day tripping: Have an adventure without busting your budget

    Tuesday, June 12 2018 10:40 AM EDT2018-06-12 14:40:18 GMT
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)

    We're all familiar with our fantastic metroparks, the Toledo Zoo and the Toledo Museum of Art. We have our staples, but if you're up for an adventure this summer, and need to watch your wallet, you need ideas and advice. “The more you can be out and about doing things, the less time they're spending in front of a tablet or a TV,” said Jen Sherwin.  Between nieces and nephews, babysitting, and her own child, Sherwin has finding things to do down to a science.

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    We're all familiar with our fantastic metroparks, the Toledo Zoo and the Toledo Museum of Art. We have our staples, but if you're up for an adventure this summer, and need to watch your wallet, you need ideas and advice. “The more you can be out and about doing things, the less time they're spending in front of a tablet or a TV,” said Jen Sherwin.  Between nieces and nephews, babysitting, and her own child, Sherwin has finding things to do down to a science.

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(WTOL) -

For us the snow, cold and ice are harsh winter conditions. About as far away as you can imagine from  hot and stagnant summer days where algae blooms thrive on in Lake Erie. Those microscopic organisms that threaten our drinking water aren’t dead beneath that ice, it barely phases them as explained by Dr. Mike McKay a professor of Biology at Bowling Green State University. 

"A lot of that algae essentially overwinters. A lot of it forms a resting stage and sits on the bottom with the sediment. So the Microcystis that we all so familiar with that is often recruited from the sediment of the lake bottom during the summer."

Dr. McKay studies it during the warm months and in the dead of winter. Going so far one winter as to use a helicopter to collect samples on the thick ice. Typically, though, it’s the Coast Guard that breaks through the ice and helps with cold season research.

“We've developed a really strong partnership with the US Coast Guard, started in 2009 with one of the ice breaks out of Cleveland. Satellites we cannot pick up surface waters under ice so this is really our window to the lake during the winter." Dr. McKay added. 

Despite the icy lake we know the Microcystis will be there waiting next summer. The ice merely forces it into hibernation. Heavy spring rains are the main weather culprit that can make a bloom thrive in the summer. To slow these nutrient rich waters from rushing into the lake farmers know their field management must continue to evolve, even in the winter.

Next time you’re out for a drive, look closely. There’s no corn, soybeans or wheat growing. But all fields, like Paul Herringshaw’s, aren’t completely quiet. 

"You're seeing more and more cover crops happening. And these people are looking into experimenting technology between the variable rate technology and strip tillage maybe to band the soil. So there's more things happening." Says Paul Herringshaw. 

Reducing nutrient runoff from fields has becoming an engulfing topic during off-season farm conferences. Part of the solution likely will require patience and time with legacy loads still in the soil.

We just pulled out our grid soil sample last summer on this field right here and I can point to that and tell you that's where my dad use to have his dairy pasture. This is the lot where we use to keep the cattle around the barn. It's because of the phosphorous that's still in the ground." Paul added.

For this season and beyond there are a lot of unknowns. Just how big will the bloom be? How toxic will it become? So work like Paul’s must continue and expand to more fields in Northwest Ohio. Because despite the cold so far this winter and ice on the lake another bloom will happen this summer.

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  • Glass City zombies? 'Toledo' sign seen during 'Walking Dead' season 9 preview

    Glass City zombies? 'Toledo' sign seen during 'Walking Dead' season 9 preview

    Friday, July 20 2018 12:29 PM EDT2018-07-20 16:29:48 GMT

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  • Saddles stolen from Dusty Boots horse camp

    Saddles stolen from Dusty Boots horse camp

    Friday, July 20 2018 12:16 PM EDT2018-07-20 16:16:06 GMT
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)

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  • All city pools closed Friday

    All city pools closed Friday

    Friday, July 20 2018 11:53 AM EDT2018-07-20 15:53:09 GMT

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    The city announced that all pools will be closed today due to the rain and forecast storms. 

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