Big cattle, big sugar, legacy pollution, poor water management guidelines, farmers flooding STA's, and an endangered bird not seen in years is setting the stage for the next big bloom of red tide. The blue algae bloom in lake O is now over 300 square miles and the lake is too high for this time of year due to ACOE not releasing water south to protect the potential breeding grounds of an endangered bird nobody has seen in years or previously constructed STA's intended to accept runoff from the lake are full of water that came directly from farm fields so farm fields wouldn't flood. Now we have this tremendous cesspool of polluted water that needs to be released and they are going to dump it to the east and west coasts where native patch blooms of red tide eagerly await the nutrient rich water in the salt water and the blue green algae awaits the nutrient boost in the brackish and freshwater systems downstream of Lake 0. The more things change, the more they stay the same...maybe another study will help..smdh..pissed... 'Impending disaster.' Worsening algae bloom on Lake Okeechobee threatens coasts again (msn.com) Elsewhere on the lake, the algae wasn't as chunky, but satellite photos were just as shocking: NOAA monitoring images on Wednesday showed nearly two thirds of the lake, or 500 square miles, were covered with blue-green algae, the potentially toxic stuff that has fouled rivers and canals in the west and east coasts of Florida in past years, killing fish and scaring tourists away. Green streaks of algae are already visible moving down from the Moore Haven lock on the Caloosahatchee River, which has received Lake Okeechobee water releases in recent weeks to lower lake levels. Is South Florida in for another summer of slime? The answer has a lot to do with how much water will be flushed from the lake to Florida's west and east coasts. Already, Lake Okeechobee is at 13.6 feet, 2.5 feet higher than what it was at this time last year. Forecasters are predicting a "well above average" hurricane season this year. "This is an impending disaster," said John Cassani, of Calusa Waterkeeper. He and other activists are asking Gov. Ron DeSantis to declare a state of emergency to protect the Caloosahatchee from harmful lake discharges as the rainy season approaches and the need to lower water levels will be unavoidable. "Think of the lake as a giant cesspool being flushed into the Caloosahatchee every day with no end in sight. It's a catastrophic situation."' ............................. "Typically, we don't see this much algal coverage on the lake until June or July, when we're have the longest day lengths," and sunlight drives the photosynthesis that makes algae grow and reproduce, he said.