Record-high water levels spawning algae on Lake Michigan pier

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After another day of windy conditions across Michiana Monday, the areas along Lake Michigan took a beating again. Winds in excess of 40 miles per hour Monday whipped waves violently against the shoreline of Lions Park Beach.

Waves batter Lions Park Beach on April 13. Nathan Voytovick

These types of wind events have been so destructive lately because of record-high lake levels on Lake Michigan. The lake is currently an incredible four feet above its baseline level.

Not only does this mean lakeshore flooding and beach erosion will be regular problems, but it also means we can expect more impacts on piers and walkways as well, such as algae. 

It took less than a week for the North Pier in St. Joesph to fill up with algae after high waves battered the pier on March 20. Not only is this unsightly, but it makes the pier slippery and dangerous.

Algae grow in wet and dark places. Water levels are forecast to stay near or above record highs through September, so we could see more of this in the months to come.

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