What are Cyanobacteria?

Cyanobacteria or blue-green algae are bacteria capable of photosynthesis - creating their own energy from the sun. These organisms occur naturally in surface water such as lakes, ponds, rivers and streams. When conditions are right (excess nutrients, warm temperatures, and sunshine) they can rapidly form blooms of harmful algal blooms characterized by the presence of toxins produced by the bacteria.

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1. What are Cyanobacteria?
2. What are the health effects of the toxins?
3. How will I be alerted about a bloom?
4. Has there been a bloom in my area?
5. Where can I find historical occurrences of bloom and/or report a bloom?