Sodus Point, New York, is a small coastal village located directly between Rochester and Oswego. Perched at the entrance to one of Lake Ontario's largest embayments Sodus Point is home to nearly 900 residents many of whom make their living from the provision of goods and services to tourist who come to visit this scenic village ("Village of Sodus Point, History") Off shore, the shallow waters warm quickly in the spring, making them ideal habitat for brown trout and chinook salmon. This fishery, dubbed "one of the best for brown trout" in particular, draws anglers and charter captains from across the state to Sodus Point each year in the early spring to fish for the abundant trout and salmon. Revenue generated by sport fisherman is a critical source of income for residents of Wayne County. It was estimated that during one trip, each visiting angler spends more than $400 in the community on top of fees for guides and charters ("Anglers Target Sodus Point for Big Lake Ontario Brown Trout").
For many years, residents and managers in the watershed have witnessed some of the adverse impacts of the higher than ideal levels of Phosphorous and Chlorophyll being washed into the embayment from the impervious surfaces and agricultural lands upstream (Souza et al. 2007). That said, the full extent of the detrimental effects of these known pollutants were not felt by the community until August 2010. In that year, the combined effects of lower than normal water levels and elevated spring temperatures added additional stress to the already eutrophic embayment, triggering a bloom of blue-green algae consisting of a toxin producing strain of cyanobacteria called microcystis ("Keeping the Algae at Bay in Sodus"). Microcystin, the toxin released by this type of algae, is a serious threat to public health with the capacity to cause irreversible liver damage to humans and animals that are exposed to it ("Microcystin-LR in Drinking Water" PDF). To protect the health and well-being of Sodus Point residents and visitors beaches were closed far earlier than normal, cutting the tourist season short and costing the community millions of dollars ("Direct Mitigation of a Harmful Algal Bloom in Sodus Bay, Lake Ontario").
2010's unparralled losses drove residents and the local Sodus Bay advocacy group to seek out funding for the research and design of effective algae management strategies. In 2011, both New York Sea Grant and the US EPA funded projects with a focus on algae management and in Sodus Bay. Upon their completion, funded projects will produce a model to provide a better understanding of the nutrient and algal dynamics of Sodus Bay and data on the use of liquid hydrogen peroxide for algae management. ("NYSG Funds Lake Ontario Algal Bloom Research on Sodus Bay"; "Direct Mitigation of a Harmful Algal Bloom in Sodus Bay, Lake Ontario"). Since their inception, public involvement has played a key role in the success of these projects. Sodus Bay residents, the local business association, and the bay advocacy group have taken unprecedented actions in an effort to protect Sodus Bay; volunteering their time, homes, and facilities to ensure projects' success.
Although both projects seek to treat the symptoms of a larger scale challenges, notably: nutrient management and climate change, residents and managers remain hopeful that the actions taken in the community will help to prevent Sodus Bay from becoming the next known hotspot for algae blooms ("Direct Mitigation of a Harmful Algal Bloom in Sodus Bay, Lake Ontario"). By taking action to prevent other large scale harmful algal blooms in Sodus Bay residents hope to maintain the area's pristine reputation, ensure that tourists to continue to be drawn to the community, and maintain their own quality of life ("Keeping the Algae at Bay in Sodus").