Category Archives: Outdoors

Corps braces for more levee breaches as Missouri River flood heads downstream

KANSAS CITY, MO – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Kansas City District declared a flood emergency along the Missouri River last week due to concerns resulting from heavy rainfall, saturated and snow-covered soils across the basin, and increased releases from upstream dams. The resulting effects pushed river stages into minor, moderate, and major flood stage at various locations along the Missouri River from Rulo, Neb., to St. Louis, Mo.

The Kansas City District Emergency Operations Center is currently operating at a level 2 partial activation, during which the Corps collects, evaluates, interprets and disseminates flooding information both internally and externally. The Corps continues to closely monitor the situation and reiterates that during this flood event that the public remain vigilant and aware of their surroundings.

The Corps is currently providing direct and technical assistance to local levee owners and operators and has dispatched liaison teams to work with both the Kansas Department of Emergency Management and the Missouri State Emergency Management Agency. The assistance includes providing sandbags and sandbag filling machines.

Four non-federal levees have breached in the Kansas City District’s area of responsibility. River stages are currently rebounding in and around Rulo, Neb., and St. Joseph, Mo. The water levels are dangerously high and present great risk to people, property and levee systems.

The flood crest will move downstream, expected to impact non-federal levees systems more than federal levees along the Missouri River.

Officials advise drivers to be cautious on local wet, sloppy roads

Local officials are asking everyone traveling on non-paved roads to slow down and use extreme caution. Non-
paved roads have become hazardous with the recent wet and rainy conditions in the Osage County area. With the wet weather expected to continue for the next couple of days, emergency management officials are asking drivers to please slow down, closely watch road conditions, don’t drive through flooded areas, and avoid non-paved roads whenever possible.

More moderate to heavy rain is expected to continue Tuesday evening and Wednesday.

For more information about this local travel advisory, contact Bryce Romine, Osage County Emergency Management director, at 785-828-3323, or 131 W. 14th St., Lyndon, Kan.

Annual NWS severe weather talk scheduled at Burlingame

Remnants of the Harveyville United Methodist Church were all that remained after a tornado ripped through the small Wabaunsee County town on Feb. 28, 2012.

The National Weather Service and Osage County Emergency Management will present a severe weather safety and information talk at 7 p.m. March 14, 2019, at Schuyler Community Center, 218 W. Fremont St., Burlingame, Kan.

Every year, the National Weather Service in Topeka presents severe weather safety and information talks which are open to the general public. Presentations are typically around 90 minutes long and given by a meteorologist from the Topeka NWS office, focusing on severe storm safety, preparedness, and accurate identification of storm features.

In addition to attending a talk, anyone interested in becoming a weather spotter is encouraged to complete an online training class focused on the basics of convective weather and storm structure. See www.weather.gov/top/spottertalks for more information about the NWS weather talks and spotter training.

For more information about the weather talk in Burlingame, contact Bryce Romine, Osage County Emergency Management director, at [email protected] or 785-828-3323.

KDHE issues health advisory, safety tips in preparation for Flint Hills burning season

TOPEKA, Kan. – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is reminding Kansans that March and April are a time when large areas of the state’s Flint Hills rangeland are burned. These burns help preserve the tallgrass prairie, control invasive species such as Eastern Red Cedar and sumac, and provide better forage for cattle. Prescribed burning minimizes risk of wildfires and is effective in managing rangeland resources. Smoke from the burns can influence the air quality of downwind areas. The use of smoke management techniques is vital to reduce impacts.

KDHE will activate the Kansas smoke modeling tool on March 1, 2019, prior to widespread burning in the Flint Hills. The computer models use fire data and current weather conditions to predict the potential contribution of smoke to downwind air quality problems. On average there are approximately 2.3 million acres burned in the Flint Hills of Kansas and Oklahoma each year.

“We encourage ranchers and land managers to take advantage of this smoke modeling resource to spread out their burns more effectively and mitigate potential air quality impacts,” said Douglas Watson, meteorologist at the KDHE Bureau of Air. “For burns to be safe and effective, weather and rangeland conditions must be ideal. Many landowners will burn at the same time when such conditions are met. Air pollutants from the burns can affect persons in the Flint Hills and can be carried long distances to more populated areas.”

Prescribed burns release large amounts of particulate matter and substances that can form ozone. Particulate matter and ozone can cause health problems, even in healthy individuals. Common health problems include burning eyes, runny nose, coughing and illnesses such as bronchitis. Individuals with respiratory issues, pre-existing heart or lung diseases, children and elderly may experience worse symptoms.

Steps to protect your health on days when smoke is present in your community include:

  • Healthy people should limit or avoid strenuous outdoor exercise.
  • People with respiratory or heart related illnesses should remain indoors.
  • Help keep indoor air clean by closing doors and windows and running air conditioners with air filters.
  • Keep hydrated by drinking lots of water.
  • Contact your doctor if you have symptoms such as chest pain, chest tightness, shortness of breath or severe fatigue.

For more information about burning in the Flint Hills, the Flint Hills Smoke Management Plan, the April burn restrictions, and the smoke modeling tool, see www.ksfire.org.

Learn how to establish a pollinator garden

Monarch butterflies along the Flint Hills Nature Trail. Photo thanks to Kareen King.

The Frontier Extension District and Anderson County Conservation District will host a public meeting, “Starting a Pollinator Garden”, at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 14, 2019, at the community building in Garnett, Kan.

Bret Laprarie, territory sales agronomist for Sharp Brothers Seed Company, will talk about establishing a pollinator garden. He will discuss plant species that should be considered, and how to maintain a garden for our pollinator friends.

To cap the evening off, John Conway, resource conservationist with the Kansas Association of Conservation Districts, will visit with the group about monarch butterflies and how to build a habitat to help them survive their trip south.

This meeting is packed full of information to consume and to take home. Anyone interested in learning more about these topics should attend. The Anderson County Conservation District and the Frontier Extension District will provide some light refreshments for the evening.

For more information, contact Ryan Schaub at 785-448-6826 or Debbie Davis at 785-448-6323 ext. 101.

Limericks and posters make kids dig deep into soil conservation

Winners of the Osage County Conservation District’s poster, essay and limerick contest were honored guests at the district’s annual meeting Jan. 28, 2019, when they received their awards.

Each year the Osage County Conservation District sponsors a poster, essay and limerick contest, with a different theme each year determined by the National Association of Conservation Districts. This year’s theme was “Life in the Soil: Dig Deeper”.

“Congratulations to all the winners,” said Lori Kuykendall, Osage County Conservation District manager. “We appreciate the teachers and students taking time to enter the contest.”

Information about the competition is given to the schools in late October, with entries due before Christmas break. A total of 350 entries were received. There were no essays submitted this year.

This year’s winners are:

Osage County’s 2018 Young Farmer: Balding recognized for hard work on the farm

Jace Balding: Young farmer of the year.

By Lori Kuykendall
Osage County Conservation District

This year’s Osage County Young Farmer awardee is Jace Balding, of rural Osage City. Balding grew up near Reading with his brother and two sisters. He got an early start with farming and ranching, with his father doing custom cattle work and managing grassland. His grandfather had some row crop land that Jace also helped with.

The first job on the farm Balding remembers doing is feeding cattle. “I have fed a lot of cattle!” he said.

Balding also ran the swather and rake as a kid. His dad did all the baling, though. Once, when he was 10 years old, he was allowed to run the combine.

“It was a lot of fun until my mom found out,” Balding said.

Balding was active in 4-H as a kid. The goal of 4-H is to develop citizenship, leadership, responsibility and life skills through hands on learning projects. Balding’s family had a sheep herd and bottle calves, and learned many life skills by caring for and showing these animals.

In 1999, when he was in high school, he went to work for Ron and Pat Fredrickson on the weekends and during the summer. In 2005, he earned his associate degree from Butler Community College in farm and ranch management. He went to work for the Fredricksons full time after his graduation. The Fredricksons were awarded the 1999 Banker Soil Conservation Award, 2010 Grassland Award, and the 2012 Banker Water Quality Award. Balding helped with a lot of the work that allowed them to receive those awards.

2018 Kansas Bankers Award: Pearson family dedicated to improving land, clean water

The Pearson family: 2018 Kansas Bankers Award winners for Osage County.

By Rod Schaub
Frontier Extension District Agent

Pearson Farms has been selected as the winner of the 2018 Kansas Bankers Association’s Soil Conservation Award, which recognizes farmers and ranchers that have improved their land through conservation practices that conserve their soil.

This year’s winners are Fred and Pat Pearson and their family, of Osage City. The family includes son Clark and his wife, Bobbi, and Max, their son; son Jim and his wife, Dawn, and their children, Paige and Peyton; and son Jeff, who is not involved in the farming operation.

The Pearson family has farmed in the Osage City area for more than 145 years. Fred’s great-grandfather settled northwest of Osage City in 1874. His first job after immigrating from Sweden was working in the coal mines, and soon afterwards he started farming. Paige, a senior at Kansas State University, and brother Peyton, a college freshman, plan to be the sixth generation of Pearsons to farm in Osage County.

Fred was born and raised on a farm near Miller. He attended Kansas State University from 1959 to 1963, where he studied ag education. He met Pat during college. Pat grew up on a farm near Manhattan.

“My father wanted someone in the family to farm, and he was pleased to find out that Fred and I planned to marry,” Pat said. Fred and Pat were married in 1963.

From 1963 to 1968, Fred taught vocational agriculture at Burlingame, and Pat taught grade school at Osage City. Pat retired from teaching to take care of her grandchildren and help as needed around the farm.

The first ground Fred and Pat bought was in 1966. The land was very poor and needed a lot of conservation work and trees and brush controlled. In 1966, Fred and his father, Earl, started the Miller Elevator. The elevator has grown over time and they currently have three locations, Miller, Hartford and Neosho Rapids. The young couple purchased 240 acres and moved to their current home in 1969.

The Pearson Family farm consists of crop farming, mainly corn, soybeans and wheat, the elevator business, and cattle, mainly stockers, and also a cowherd. All this takes coordination of effort and the family divides the work to get the job done. Jim and a hired man plant crops, run the combine, bale the hay, care for the cattle and repair fences. Clark works the elevator, keeps up on crop variety selections, herbicide and insecticide use, and does most of the crop scouting. Bobbi and Dawn have off the farm jobs to help supplement the family income. They both grew up on good family farms, understand farm life, and are a great help around the farm. Fred started slowing down in 2014 and now helps where needed.

Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism welcomes Loveless as new leader

TOPEKA, Kan. – Gov. Laura Kelly has named Brad Loveless to be secretary of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism. His appointment was effective Jan. 14, 2019.

Loveless is familiar to many Kansans and to KDWPT staff as a leader in conservation and environmental programs. He comes to the department from a 34-year career with Westar Energy where he was most recently the senior director of environmental conservation and sustainability. Prior to that position, he was director of biology and conservation programs and earlier held environmental management positions at Wolf Creek Nuclear Operating Corporation. He is perhaps most well-known as one of the leaders of Westar’s Green Team, an active volunteer group of employees and retirees that has been helping with habitat improvement, environmental access and education, and enhancement of sensitive species for 30 years.

“During my career, I have had the pleasure of working closely with KDWPT staff on many occasions,” Loveless said. “They are dedicated and hard-working, and I look forward to helping them manage the state’s natural resources and promote all the wonderful outdoor and travel experiences that Kansas offers.”

In 2013, Loveless was awarded the Kansas State Forester’s Award for Community Forestry. In 2009, he was recognized by the Kansas Wildlife Federation as Wildlife Conservationist of the Year and by the Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education as their Strickler Award winner for Environmental Education. He is an avid hunter, angler and beekeeper.

Ready for winter? It’s here

The National Weather Service at Topeka is advising another round of wintry precipitation is expected today into Thursday morning with the worst conditions this evening and overnight. Snow and ice amounts are expected to remain light with only minor impacts mainly to roads, especially on bridges and other elevated surfaces.

Drivers are advised to be prepared for slick driving conditions especially during the latter portions of the day today.

A winter weather advisory is in effect from noon today to 6 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, and covers Republic, Washington, Marshall, Nemaha, Cloud, Clay, Riley, Pottawatomie, Ottawa, Dickinson, Geary, Morris, Wabaunsee, Lyon and Osage counties.

A winter weather advisory for snow means periods of snow will cause primarily travel difficulties. Expect snow covered roads and limited visibilities, and use caution while driving. The latest road conditions for the state can be obtained by calling 511.

NWS is also warning that a bitterly cold air mass is forecast to move into the region this weekend. As temperatures drop and winds increase, very cold wind chill readings will likely result. The coldest periods will be from Saturday evening through Sunday night. Wind chill values are expected to fall as low as -20 degrees F over portions of the area.

Everyone is advised to be weather aware and remember cold weather safety.

Winter weather moves in for weekend

National Weather Service in Topeka has issued an urgent winter weather message warning of a winter weather advisory that remains in effect from 6 p.m. this evening Jan. 11, 2019, to 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12.

Snow with accumulations of 2 to 6 inches are expected to begin this evening across east central, north central and northeast Kansas.

The advisory covers Republic, Washington, Marshall, Nemaha, Brown, Cloud, Clay, Riley,  Pottawatomie, Jackson, Jefferson, Ottawa, Dickinson, Geary, Morris, Wabaunsee, Shawnee, Douglas, Lyon, Osage, Franklin, Coffey and Anderson counties.

A winter weather advisory means periods of snow will cause primarily travel difficulties.  Expect snow covered roads and limited visibilities, and use caution while driving. The latest road conditions for the state can be obtained by calling 511.

KDA offers morel mushroom identification workshops

MANHATTAN, Kan. – The Kansas Department of Agriculture, in partnership with K-State Research and Extension, Kaw Valley Mycological Society and the University of Kansas, is offering two sessions to help people earn the necessary approval to sell wild morel mushrooms. The sessions will take place in Olathe on Feb. 1, and in Parsons on Feb. 2, in conjunction with Regional Farmers’ Market Workshops.

The session is intended to help ensure that wild harvested mushrooms sold as morels in the state of Kansas are safe to consume. Current regulations under KDA’s food safety and lodging program require that mushrooms picked in the wild for sale must be individually inspected for safety by an approved mushroom identifier. Upon completion of this workshop, participants will be recognized as approved morel identifiers in order to meet this regulation. This is a three-year approval.

The session in Olathe will be held 2-3 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1, 2019,  at K-State Olathe, 22201 W. Innovation Dr., Olathe. The session in Parsons will be held 2-3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019, at Southeast Research & Extension Center, 25092 Ness Rd., Parsons.

I-70 closed between Colby and WaKeeney

Kansas Department of Transportation has announced that Interstate 70 between Colby and WaKeeney was closed this morning, Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018, in both directions because of winter weather conditions. Several other highways in western Kansas are also closed.

For up-to-date information on road closures and road conditions, check travel information at www.kandrive.org, or call 511 in Kansas or 866-511-5368 outside Kansas.

Corps cautions against hazards of winter recreation on the water

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Kansas City District is urging caution for those recreating on or near water during cold weather. No matter the season, water safety is a year-round concern.

“We urge you to consider your safety and that of others when recreating at a lake or river this winter,” said Col. Douglas Guttormsen, commander of the Kansas City District. “Weather conditions in the heartland are unpredictable and directly affect the condition of ice on the water. Don’t risk it.”

Before heading outdoors, make a plan, pack accordingly and know the risks. Dress appropriately for the water temperature not the air temperature, because you could find yourself capsized, or thrown from a boat. Life jackets save lives and should be worn at all times by anyone in a boat, including those waterfowl hunting or fishing.

Overbrook sets comprehensive plan for geese control; schedules controlled hunt

For the past year, the city of Overbrook has been looking at ways to control the goose population as well as the blue-green algae issue at the Overbrook City Lake and the Kid’s Fishing Pond. The city received input from Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, the lake steering committee, Overbrook Parks and Recreation, and the public. Using that information, the Overbrook City Council formulated and approved the following comprehensive plan to control the geese population:

Canada Geese Control – Overbrook Comprehensive Plan

The overpopulation of geese on the Overbrook City Lake contributes to the growth of blue green algae. Additionally, goose droppings create a messy path around the lake. The average Canada goose produces more fecal waste than a dairy cow on a per-weight basis.  The city has begun using the broom on the grasshopper mower to make walking the path more pleasant.

Methods of control are necessary. The City has been working with the Overbrook Lake Committee, Parks and Rec, and State Wildlife and Parks personnel during the past year to develop a long-term, effective, humane solution to reduce the number of resident geese.

There is no single quick fix. Research shows that the best geese control programs combine three methods: Limiting flock growth through egg oiling and controlled hunting, frightening geese (humanely) so they decide to leave on their own, and changing the habitat/no feeding so the lake isn’t attractive to geese. No Feeding signs are posted at the lake. Fines will be evaluated.

Controlled hunts are being planned and will begin mid-December. Signs will be posted at the lake, on Facebook, and the city alert system and the website indicating times the lake will be closed to residents. Overbrook residents who would like to be included in the hunt lottery need to be experienced waterfowl hunters and have all licenses and hunting permits.

USACE urges safety when hunting in public areas

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Kansas City District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers urges all hunters to be safe this fall when hunting at the 18 lakes throughout Missouri, Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska and the Missouri River.

Whether your hunting season started Labor Day weekend or you are still awaiting your first opportunity to venture out, hunter safety is a must. First, before you put on your hunting gear here are five safety musts to ensure many return visits to that favorite spot:

Follow firearms safety practices

Treat every gun as if it were loaded. Never point a gun at anything you’re not willing to shoot, Ever! Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

Know your surroundings

Learn the location of the property boundaries, homes, building, trails, and other recreation areas where you are hunting. Know where to hunt and know where other people and places are located.

Wear safety equipment

State laws require specific safety equipment or attire to be wore while hunting. It is also important to remember to wear your life jacket while hunting from a boat or a safety harness while hunting high up in a tree.

Respect other public land users

Public land allows for multiple different uses. Hikers, bikers, and wildlife watchers have just as much privilege to use public land as hunters. Respect their use too.

Non-hunters near hunting areas

Non-hunters and their pets should wear bright, noticeable clothing and make enough noise for adjacent hunters to know your presence. If you want to avoid hunting altogether many public use areas around the lake are restricted to hunting.

Governor issues state of disaster emergency declaration following winter storm

The National Weather Service’s snowfall total map shows Osage County received as much as six inches of snow north of Burlingame, and as little as 1.2 inches near Melvern Lake, during Sunday’s storm.

As Gov. Jeff Colyer issued a statewide disaster emergency declaration, Kansans began to work on recovery efforts in the wake of the winter storm that blew through Kansas Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018. The governor’s declaration authorizes the use of state resources and personnel to assist with response and recovery operations in affected counties.

While crews continued to clean roads and streets Monday, the governor and state officials advised holiday travelers to be prepared for conditions they might encounter.

“Here in Kansas we make it a priority to take care of our neighbors,” said Colyer. “We strongly recommend that you postpone travel plans, if possible, however, if you must be on the road, make sure your vehicle’s emergency kit is stocked, your gas tank is full and your cell phone and charger are with you and someone knows your travel plans. Also, be mindful of all emergency response personnel out on Kansas roadways and give them space to do their jobs to ensure their safety and that of our citizens.”

The Kansas Division of Emergency Management activated the State Emergency Operations center in Topeka to a partial level, to monitor the weather and coordinate any state emergency response operations that might be requested.

During the storm, the Kansas Department of Transportation reported multiple road closures due to visibility including I-70 eastbound and westbound from Salina to WaKeeney. For an updated list of road conditions go to the Kansas Department of Transportation web site at kandrive.org. Winter road conditions are accessible by dialing 511 from your mobile phone anywhere in Kansas; outside Kansas call 866-511-5368 (KDOT).

KDEM received reports of vehicles getting stuck in the snow and those individuals leaving their vehicles and walking in the storm. KDEM advises that the safest place for travelers is to remain in their vehicle. Road crews may not see pedestrians due to visibility issues. If stuck, KDEM advises to stay in your vehicle, but make sure your exhaust pipe is clear and not clogged with snow or ice debris or you run the risk of filling your vehicle is carbon monoxide. Run your car sparingly while you are waiting on help, and keep a window cracked. If stuck in the snow call the Kansas Highway Patrol by dialing *HP (47), or *KTA (582) while on the Kansas Turnpike.

The Kansas National Guard has Stranded Motorists Assistance Response Teams in nine locations throughout the state. The SMART teams, which consist of two High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWVs) and four Guardsmen, are assisting local law enforcement with patrolling impacted roads and assisting with stranded motorists.

Following the storm, with the brunt moving through Kansas by Sunday evening, Westar Energy and Midwest Energy reported power outages across multiple counties in the western and northeastern portions of the state.  

Weekend winter storm forecast for Kansas

A winter storm system is forecast to descend across Kansas with the heaviest forecast of snow in the northern half of the state Saturday night into mid-day Sunday with snow and extreme blowing snow that will drastically limit visibility to those on affected Kansas roadways.

The Kansas Division of Emergency Management is reminding Kansans that road travel is discouraged during extreme winter storm situations.

KDEM is coordinating with the Kansas National Guard to place stranded motorists assistance response teams throughout the forecast most heavily impacted areas and will staff the State Emergency Operations Center during deployment of these teams. If the need arises the SMART teams will deploy to assist local law enforcement with stranded motorists.

“Kansans are urged to change or delay their travel plans in these areas until the storm moves through,” said Angee Morgan, KDEM deputy director. “Some areas will see gusting winds which will cause blizzard like and whiteout conditions with areas of blowing and drifting snow. This could cause extremely hazardous traveling conditions.  If you plan to travel, use caution and make sure your car emergency kit is stocked.”

Winter Weather Awareness Day recognizes need to prepare

Winter Weather Awareness Day in Kansas is today, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018. Emergency managers recommend observing the day as a time for Kansans to take stock of emergency supplies and review home emergency plans.

A home emergency supply kit should include enough nonperishable food and water for each person to survive for a minimum of seven days, a safe alternate heat source, blankets, flashlights and batteries, a battery-operated weather radio, essential medicines, and other items needed for health and comfort should the power go out.

Vehicles should be equipped with emergency kits, too, particularly if you are planning to travel long distances. These kits should include weather appropriate clothing, bottled water for everyone, nonperishable, high-energy snack items, flashlights and batteries, a battery-operated radio, blankets, a compact snow shovel, extra medications, signal flares and other emergency supplies to allow you to survive until help can arrive. It is also advisable to fill your gas tank before you start on a journey, check engine fluid levels and tire pressure, and make sure cell phones are fully charged.

Emergency plans and preparations should also include family pets. During winter storms, bring outdoor pets inside, if possible, or ensure that they have a draft-free enclosure with straw type bedding that is large enough to sit and lie down, but small enough to hold their body heat if they must remain outside. Always make sure that your pets have access to food and non-frozen water.

Blue-green algae warnings lifted for all Osage County lakes

TOPEKA – All lakes in Osage County that were previously under watch or warning status for blue-green algae have been cleared by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.

The two agencies lifted the warning and watch for Melvern Outlet Pond and Carbondale West Lake this week; they were the two remaining lakes in Osage County under the algae alert.

In northeast Kansas, the agencies have issued a public health warning for Frazier Lake in Grant County for the upcoming weekend and week, and South Lake Park, Johnson County, remains under a watch status.

Several lakes in Osage County experienced blue-green algae blooms over the summer, including Carbondale West Lake, Melvern Outlet Pond, Melvern Outlet Swim Pond, Overbrook City Lake, Overbrook City Kids Pond, and Pomona Lake.

If a lake is under a public health warning for blue-green algae, activities such as boating and fishing may be safe. However, direct contact with water, such as wading, skiing and swimming, is strongly discouraged for people, pets and livestock.

Two area lakes remain under health warning for blue-green algae

TOPEKA, Kan. – All except two Osage County lakes that were previously under a blue-green algae warning or watch have now been released from the public health advisories. Carbondale West Lake and Melvern Outlet Pond remain under a warning status for the algae, with activities at those lakes still restricted.

Toward the end of the summer, several area lakes were under either warning or watch status for blue-green algae. The warning or watch status has now been lifted for Melvern Outlet Swim Pond, Overbrook City Lake, Overbrook City Kids Pond, and Pomona Lake.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism issue the public health warnings for Kansas lakes.

If a lake is under a public health warning for blue-green algae, activities such as boating and fishing may be safe. However, direct contact with water, such as wading, skiing and swimming, is strongly discouraged for people, pets and livestock.

Lakes under a warning are not closed. If swim beaches are closed, it will be specifically noted. Drinking water and showers at parks are safe and not affected by algae blooms. Boating and fishing are safe on lakes under a warning but contact with the water should be avoided. Hands should also be washed with clean water after handling fish taken from an affected lake.

Contact us: Osage County News | P.O. Box 62, Lyndon, KS 66451 | [email protected] | 785-828-4994 | Powered by Osage County, Kansas