Enigmatic Lake Griffin: The mysterious waters where alligators transform into terrifying zombie-like creatures

A toxic line of  blue algae   may be implicated in the rising number of alligator deaths in Lake Griffin that has dried up over the past two years, state officials and University of Florida researchers say.

Recent findings by researchers at the University of Florida and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission have shown that Cyliindrospermopsis, a species of microscopic floating algae, makes up up to 90 percent of the algae present in the lake. This species has emerged as the main focus of research, as it is known to produce toxins that can be fatal to animals. The researchers’ findings shed light on a potential connection between the prevalence of Cyliindrospermopsis and the increased incidence of animal deaths in the area.

Experts have been surprised by the   dramatic   change in the lake, where they say two or three alligator deaths a year would be normal, compared to 200 in the last two years.

“The types of toxicants normally associated with the  cyliprospermopsis algae   have bee hepatotoxins, which affect the liver and kidney.

In addition to the death of the alligator, there has been an indication of   hepatotoxic action  ,” said Edward Phlips, associate professor at the UF Institute of Agricultural and Food Sciences.

“  However  , a new study by Chilean researchers indicates that some forms of cylipdrospermopsis produce petrotoxicity that would not be compatible with the death of the alligator that occurs in the lake.”

The results of the   study   ,  which analyzed water in Saᴜ Paᴜlo, Brazil, were published in the October edition of the newspaper Toxico.

Phlips said there have been many reports of hᴜmap die-offs associated with   cyliprospermopsis blooms    .

Perra Ross, a conservation biologist at the   Florida Museum   of Natural History at UF, and other researchers have looked for ways to explain the alligators’ extinction.

Initial tests on the alligators came back positive, Ross said. The alligators did not exhibit the liver problems typically associated with any of the   cylipdrospermopsis  kпow toxicants, she said.

“After a very thorough examination, we were disappointed   to find   very few problems with them,” Ross said. “All of their internal organs and systems appeared to be normal, and their good values ​​were similar to those reported for other alligators.”

A   more precise test   by Treptop Schoeb, a professor of pathobiology at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine, found other problems with the giant reptiles.

A   more precise test   by Treptop Schoeb, a professor of pathobiology at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine, found other problems with the giant reptiles.

“The alligators were found to have   bodily disabilities  ,” Ross said. “Its preserved copying speed is about half that of normal alligators. “Many of them have microscopic signs of damage to their peripheral parts and have lesions on their brains.”

In recent years, algae have become   welcome   and comfortably accessible in the 9,000-acre lake.

In recent years, algae have become   welcome   and comfortably accessible in the 9,000-acre lake.

“The situation is that there are a lot of cyclospermopsis in the flow  of Lake Griffi   ,” Phlips said. “It is very deep and persists for much of the year.

“Lake Griffi is one of the most bloom-friendly lakes in   Florida   in recent years. We have been sampling for the last five years, and the cyliprospermopsis has been blooming for that entire period,” she said.

Regardless of whether   or not cilipdrospermopsis   is the cause of the alligators’ death, Ross said, the presence of the algae is a symptom of an overall problem with Lake Griffin that has no easy solution.

“The algae may be   encoding   the toxicity that is affecting the alligators, but they are certainly affecting the ecology of the lake,” Ross said.

“There are almost no bass in this lake anymore, but there are plenty of catfish and other less desirable species that do well in this dirty, dark, murky water. “Toxic algae and dead alligators are symptoms of a   widespread disturbance  in the lake’s ecology.”

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