Water Quality Articles

E. coli, Enterococci and the Beach Nuisance
What do water contact advisories really mean around Lake Superior? It might not be what you think.
Should we worry about microplastics in Lake Superior?
Those tiny plastic pellets that researchers have found in the Great Lakes raise an interesting question.
How does cigarette litter impact Lake Superior?
The research isn't all there quite yet, but the Beach Sweep is already helping to prevent the negative consequences of coastal litter.
The Gentle Winter of 2011-2012 and Minnesota's Water
What the unusual winter means for Minnesota's waters.
Plastic Debris and Whale Burps
Curio-cabinet oddities remind us to pick up our trash.
A New Chapter for a Seaside City
A new Unified Development Chapter shows that the City of Duluth, Minnesota, is serious about stormwater management.
Aquatic Science Gets Hormonal
Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) affect aquatic animals in ways that trouble ecologists and also concern human health experts.
Faux Oil Spill
The U.S. Coast Guard and coastal communities practice responding to fuel spills.
Mapping the Great Lakes: The GLOS Mapping Workshops
New workshops by the Great Lakes Observing System offer useful ways to integrate data for decision-making when planning events (like kayak and fishing trips) on Lake Superior.
Harmful Algae in Minnesota Lakes: When in Doubt, Stay Out!
Blue-green algae can become toxic. Recognize when to stay out of the water through this summary of workshops Sea Grant hosted about harmful algal blooms. The workshops were the first of their kind in the Great Lakes region to train a variety of audiences.
Scientists Find Bird and Human E. coli in Wild Fish
Fish in the Duluth-Superior Harbor can carry bacteria from other species, which has implications for anglers and beach monitoring programs.
Citizen Water Monitoring Project Leads to Improved Public Health
One person can make a difference when it comes to contaminated water. Also, find out which E. coli monitoring test kit two out of three citizen volunteers prefer!
Large Mayfly Hatch Prompts Public Concern
A report from the public of a possible fish kill turned out to be a large mayfly hatch.
Lake Superior Holds Onto Her Dead ... and Her Toxaphene
Researchers have found that Lake Superior's combination of cold water and bacteria allow it to hold onto toxins.
Young Eagles Tell Story of Great Lakes Pollution
The National Park Service is getting a bird's eye view of some persistent toxins that accumulate towards the top of aquatic food chains. Photo courtesy of Craig Thompson, Institute for Wildlife Studies.
Why is mercury more of a problem in the gamefish of Minnesota’s northeastern lakes than in other areas?
Why is mercury more of a problem in the gamefish of Minnesota's northerneastern lakes than in other areas?
Estuary Champions Discuss Needs of St. Louis River
Compared to Chesapeake Bay, the St. Louis River estuary is pristine but chemical contamination tops concerns among science panelists.
Cass Lake Superfund Update
Long-awaited actions to protect the public health of residents of the St. Regis Superfund Site are set to begin this winter.
Germ Hunters Go to Prison
Find out what researchers learned about bacteria and virus survival in alternative wastewater treatment systems.
Citizens Identify Priorities for Lake Superior Restoration
Restoring and protecting habitats and coastal wetlands to enhance fish and wildlife, and creating opportunities for coastal communities to adopt sustainable use practices were top Lake Superior priorities during a workshop in Duluth.
Gaining a Superior Perspective
Participants in "A View from the Lake" got more than a view from the lake. Roughly 500 people learned about water quality, land use, and Lake Superior from the deck of the L.L Smith, Jr. this summer.
Sea Grant Aids Superfund Site Clean-Up
The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe wrestles with information about the toxins left on their lands. Find out what three panels of experts suggest should happen next.
What You Can Do to Help Lake Superior
In this magazine-length feature article, three natural resource managers from around Lake Superior describe the challenges they face and explain how you can help protect the lake's environment. A photo album of images from Isle Royale, Tettegouche State Park, and Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is included.
A Tale of Two Cities’ Lawn Care Practices
Plymouth, MN, like a growing number of Twin Cities suburbs, has an ordinance restricting the use of phosphorus for lawn fertilization. Plymouth's neighboring city, Maple Grove, does not have a phosphorus-restricting ordinance. This sets up an opportunity to compare lawn care practices between homeowners in the two cities and see if the ordinance reduces the phosphorus content of water runoff.
“Sensing” Duluth’s Streams
Four of Duluth's 42 streams will soon flow past your computer on their way to Lake Superior. A project is underway to monitor the water quality of the streams, and to deliver information through a Web site and interactive kiosks.
Scrambled Sexual Signals
Endocrine disrupters are getting into our waterways and can impact the sex lives of fish.
Watershed Planning, The Sequel
University of Connecticut specialists return to the northland to share more insights about NEMO, a nonpoint source pollution program for municipal officials that combines technology, ecology, and community development.
What If? — Planning a Watershed’s Future
Sea Grant is helping to sponsor a national program devoted to educating city planners and decision makers about the way land use influences water quality.
Our Lake Has Fleas
Lake Superior is swarming with fleas. At least 36 species of cladocerans, or waterfleas, reproduce in the lake and it looks like a 37th is on its way.
Bonanza for Lake Superior
Find out what the word "seiche" means and how seiches impact the biology of Lake Superior.
Science Overboard! Vessels Aid Exploration of Lake Superior
Vessels Aid Exploration of Lake Superior. Three research vessels, the Blue Heron, the L.L. Smith Jr. and the Lake Explorer, are profiled.
Great Salt Lake Superior?
A Sea Grant researcher interprets climate change models and discusses what this could mean for Lake Superior.
Lake Superior Recycles its PCBs
Recycling isn't such a good thing where Lake Superior and PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) are concerned. Sea Grant researchers have found that Lake Superior converts PCBs into fish food instead of burying them in its sediment like smaller freshwater lakes do.
Understanding Viruses in Lake Superior
For the first time, researchers are looking at the amount of viruses present in one of the Great Lakes and what effects global climate change may have on the viruses.

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Cynthia Hagley
Environmental Quality Educator

This page last modified on January 07, 2014     © 1996 – 2014 Regents of the University of Minnesota     The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.
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