Test Results Back For Lower Santa Fe River

Florida Department of Health and Alachua County Environmental Protection Department test report on the Lower Santa Fe River section between US 27 Bridge Park and Poe Springs as follows:

Samples were collected on 5/21/12 from the Santa Fe River at US27 and upstream of Poe Springs. Examination of the algal mats in the samples indicated a mix of taxa present including the green algal taxa Oedogonium, Rhizoclonium, Spirogyra, and Vaucheria and several species of the “bluegreen algal” taxa Oscillatoria and Phormidium.

All of the samples contained an abundance of what is tentatively identified as Anabaena circinalis (Cyanobacteria). The filament characteristics, cell size, heterocyte shape, and shape and size of the one akinete observed are consistent with descriptions of this taxon. Attached are photos of this taxon in the samples. The US27 sampl e was unstained (hence the blueish color of the cells) but Lugols solution was added to the Upstream of Poe sample in the counting chamber prior to taking the photos (hence the brown color of the cells). This taxon has the potential to produce both saxitoxin and anatoxin based on Table 1 in Landsberg (2002). This taxon, like Microcystis, tends to concentrate at the surface of the water column during the day. At high densities in lakes, dissolved oxygen levels are usually elevated during daylight hours and low during hours of darkness.

On a quick look basis (non-quantitative) both water grab samples had about the same amount of Anabaena circinalis in them. The US27 samples also contained numerous chains of Aulacosira granulata (diatom) and colonies of Dinobryon divergens (chrysophyte). However, these are usually not problematic taxa.

After standing overnight, the liter bottle from upstream of Poe Springs had a thin surface film of algae on it. Some of this surface film was removed with a pipet, placed in a counting chamber, and examined on the microscope. Except for a few straight filaments of another species of Anabaena, Anabaena circinalis was the only taxon observed.

Becky Lazensky
Aquatic Public Health Epidemiologist
Aquatic Toxins Disease Prevention Program
Florida Department of Health

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