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Toxic Blue-Green Algae Kills More Than a Hundred Elk
A hunter stumbled upon a bizarre sight on a 75,000-acre ranch north of Las Vegas, N.M., on Aug. 27: the remains of more than 100 dead elk. Livestock deaths are not unusual, but so many animals dying off, and doing so in what seems to be under 24 hours, was puzzling to scientists

Officials with the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish investigated the mysterious elk deaths and ruled out several possible causes for the elk deaths, including poachers, anthrax, lightning strikes, epizootic hemorrhagic disease (an often-fatal virus known to affect deer and other ruminants), botulism, poisonous plants, malicious poisoning and even some sort of industrial or agricultural accident.

Through science and further testing of elk tissue samples and water samples, it was determined that pond scum was the culprit. Or, more specifically, a neurotoxin produced by one type of blue-green algae that can develop in warm, standing water.

 
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Town Eager to Tackle Lake Beseck’s Out-of-Control Weeds - Seen from Route 147, Lake Beseck may look like it has returned to normal following the lowering of the lake’s water level in October of 2013 to facilitate a dam repair, but two new weeds are choking acres of water and waterfront since the draw down.


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