'Blood lake' a product of drought
Red bacteria thrive in the oxygen-poor water of a drought-shrunken Texas lake, naturalists say.
August 5th, 2011
12:50 PM ET

'Blood lake' a product of drought

A Texas reservoir has turned a deep red, prompting a pastor to speculate it's a sign of the coming Apocalypse.

But the Texas Department of Fish and Wildlife says it's just an indication of how bad the current drought is. About 99% of Texas is under drought conditions, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

The Texas Department of Fish and Wildlife says water levels in the reservoir receded, which, mixed with the warm weather, helped lower oxygen levels. The low oxygen levels prompted a fish kill and spurred the growth of  bacteria called Chromatiaceae, which thrive in such conditions. Chromatiaceae are purplish in color, prompting the "blood" red descriptions.

Texas Department of Fish and Wildlife says the reservoir will be restocked with fish as soon as the drought ends and water levels return to normal.

The Texas drought has emptied several other lakes, including one in East Texas. The receding water revealed a part of the space shuttle Columbia, which broke up over Texas in 2003, at the bottom of the lake.

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Filed under: Heat • Texas • Weather
soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. bobcat2u

    Oh no !!!!!!! Not the dreaded red tide. This is proof of the apocalypse ? Panic much ??????

    August 5, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  2. saywhat

    Well for those dying of hunger & thirst in drought stricken Somalia, those dying in military & civil conflicts around the world, the oppressed millions suffering in places like Palestine, Apocalyspe is on them. No pastor needed to foretell.

    We are blessed for now but if these droght c onditions persist for a longer period, things could turn rather bad.
    God have mercy on humanity gone crazy in plundering this planet & in its greed, lust for wars & violence.

    August 5, 2011 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  3. michaelfury

    "The receding water revealed a part of the space shuttle Columbia, which broke up over Texas in 2003, at the bottom of the lake."

    And here is Columbia's hard drive:


    August 5, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Ms. Banasy

    Michael Fury:
    When in the HELL do you have any time to write, when you're spamming all the time?

    Now back to the real news:
    A natural even that Thumper will take to the extreme, no doubt.
    I do hope that the drought ends soon, especially in Somalia.
    Millions of lives are on the line here...

    August 5, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  5. phearis

    "A Texas reservoir has turned a deep red, prompting a pastor to speculate it's a sign of the coming Apocalypse."

    *closes my eyes, dips my head and shakes it back and forth*
    It's not an algae bloom due to no oxygen and low water levels. That would be too rational of an explanation. It must be a sign of the apocalypse. ~sigh~ Really?!?

    August 5, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jeff Frank ( R - Ohio )

    The lake is red. Oh yes, this is a clear indication the Martians have landed and started migrating here. This is a sad day.

    August 5, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ms. Banasy

    @Jeff Frank:
    Well played, sir.

    August 5, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Alex

    The lake is RED??? OH NO, IT'S THE COMMUNISTS!

    August 5, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |

    THIS would be a good place to capture a vampire...

    August 5, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chartreuxe

      Tuffnutt called, you're wanted at home.

      August 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. BobNAlabama

    ...and another fool of a preacher bestowing his mythical malarky upon the stupid.

    August 5, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    It's a Sign.
    It's Truth, too.

    August 5, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    I think it's a sign of California's GOP's centrist temptation.
    Who said that they had "Independent" longings?
    The smarties in here.

    August 5, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  13. REALLY?

    NEWSFLASH: the apocalypse could be PREVENTED if we PREVENTED GLOBAL WARMING.

    August 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  14. fernace

    People don't even believe in global warming so it's gonna be hard to get any co-operation! But I believe it is a sign for us to start taking better care of the planet & eachother! It's not hard & only positive can come frome that type of effort! Now, to get that co-operation.....

    August 5, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ fernace:
    My instinct is to take care of you, because you are a person of great value to this planet.
    I do not agree with you about global warming, but you might be right.
    There aren't many humans worth saving, although you are one.

    August 5, 2011 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
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