Lakewood Ranch Considering Carp Use to Control HABs
Lakewood Ranch officials want to ditch the chemicals and instead introduce hundreds of carp fish into the community's ponds to control rampant algae growth and improve water quality.
The 250-plus ponds in the large East Manatee development enhance the suburban scenery and home property values. They also serve as storm-water treatment facilities for the water management district.
But the sometimes murky water, decaying algae blooms and tangled masses of hair grass compromise both features.
Adding carp to the equation for their abilities to eat submerged plants that support algae blooms is only one method in a multifaceted initiative to boost water quality and appearances.
The plan -- outlined by Ranch operations director Ryan Heise -- also includes installing solar-powered aeration units, adding native aquatic plants to littoral zones and educating residents about protecting ponds from fertilizer run-off....