Water Bloom

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Origin of Water Bloom

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Water bloom, they are the dense aquatic population. These are microscopic photosynthetic organisms that are produced by an excess of nutrient salts in the surface water, they bloom and breed on the water surface with adequate sunlight required for photosynthesis.

Water bloom is a cause of the rapid increase in the population of the algae which is responsible for the water body to change its own colour. This change is caused by a type of bacteria known as ‘cyanobacteria’. Thus, Water bloom gets its main origin from the blue-green algae which we will be further discussed. 

Water Bloom Meaning

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As previously introduced, water bloom is the thick and dense aquatic population which are microscopic photosynthetic organisms. Water bloom breeds in the surface water due to excess nutrient salts on it, conditioned with sufficient sunlight for their photosynthesis. 

These microorganisms are actually toxic substances. Their release may discolour the water completely, and thus deplete its oxygen content. Further water bloom might poison the aquatic animals and the waterfowls, which are birds that swim in those water. Water bloom also irritates the skin and affects the respiratory tract of human beings. 

Single species of algae, diatoms, or the dinoflagellates, reproduce every after few hours. This will result in the dominance of their growing population. Approximately the number of individuals per liter (quart) of water may be from 1,000 to 60 million.

Algal Blooms 

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An algal bloom is the speedy increase of the algae population. They originate in aquatic ecosystems. Algal bloom originates in fresh as well as in marine waters, and from here the name comes as - water bloom or the marine bloom, respectively. Algal bloom breeds well in an abundance of two types of nutrients - phosphorus and nitrogen. Their growth is usually caused by the runoff of nutrients like the dumping of animal waste, fertilizers or sewage from the farmlands.

Algal bloom constituents are mainly composed of bio-toxins and they are characterized by a distinct discolouration of the water due to large growth of pigmented algae cells. The colours of algal bloom range from green, red, brown, and yellow. The major types of algal blooms are cyanobacteria, which are the blue-green algae and the red tides, which are the red algal blooms.

Algal Bloom Treatment

Algal Bloom is a dangerous type of microorganisms, their growth will increase and enter into the food cycle if adequate measures are not assured. The toxic rate of the algal blooms is justified in the above-mentioned section, here we will see what are the ideal treatments for this algal bloom. Below mentioned is the treatment which is performed by the sewage system or by the government authorities to save the water life –

  1. Proper Sewage Installation – 

In order to restrict the presence of nitrogen and the phosphorus constituent in water, firstly there is a need to treat the sewage water, as recommended by the waste treatment procedure. These are the five-step process that ensures optimal treatment of the sewage water.

  1. To Make the Society Aware of the Pollution and Water Wastage –

To make the global environmental conservation goals a success, it should be started with individual initiatives only. Starting from minimizing the waste to reusing the waste and thus saving the environment is a big step to reduce the overall nutrient deposit into the water bodies. 

  1. Use of Correct Fertilizer –

The fertilizers which have less nutrient constituent should be used by the farmers. The farmers should be advised by the agricultural experts about the dosage of fertilizers to be used which will not lead to contaminating of the water bodies. 

  1. Treatment with Hydrogen Peroxide –

The compound which is found beneficial for the treatment of algal bloom is hydrogen peroxide which is effective for smaller water bodies.  

Blue - Green Algal Blooms

'Bloom' this term is used to indicate the rise in the algal cells to such an extent where they discolour the water, form scums and produce unpleasant tastes and odours. Blue-green algal affects the fish populations and also degrades the water quality. Accumulation of algae can cause depletion of oxygen which kills fish.

The Blue-Green Algae may Breed and Excessively increase in Water When:

  • The nutrient levels, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen are in larger constituents to support the population growth.

  • The ratio of nitrogen to phosphorus is low.

  • It is standing water (lack of the mixing of the nutrients)

  • The weather patterns are also stable. 

  • The weather is basically warm.

The Blue-green algal blooms survive for several weeks, at times months, depending mainly on the weather. Cooler and windy weather may reduce or prevent the algal blooms to breed.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Why is Sunlight required for Photosynthesis?

Ans- To perform the process of photosynthesis, the plants need the basic three things-

  • Carbon Dioxide

  • Water

  • Sunlight.

The energy from the sunlight captured by the plant stimulates a chemical reaction that breaks down the molecules of the carbon dioxide and the water and then reorganizes these constituents to make the sugar constituent or glucose, and then it produces the oxygen gas.

Sunlight provides the energy that is required for photosynthesis to take be processed in a plant. In this process, the carbon dioxide and the water are converted into oxygen (which is actually a waste product that is released back into the air) and glucose (which is the real source of energy for the plant).

2. What are Cyanobacteria?

Ans. Cyanobacteria are blue-green algae. The common name of Cyanobacteria is blue-green algae. They are moreover bacteria than algae. It gets its name from the colour and texture. Cyanobacteria are responsible for water bloom. It originates from excess dumping of nutrient salts on the surface water. 

3. How Fatal are these Algal Bloom?

Ans. Algal blooms are quite harmful when they occur in colonies of algae. When they grow out of control and thus produce toxic or harmful effects on people, aquatic animals and mammals. Human illnesses that are caused by harmful algal blooms, even if rare but can prove to be fatal.