Home  »  Cause  »  Save Our Rivers, Stop Killing Fish with Excessive Lawn Fertilizer
GENE M. MARCHAND/ENTERPRISE
Sixteen dead striped bass were among dead fish found on the shore of Little Pond.
Save Our Rivers, Stop Killing Fish with Excessive Lawn Fertilizer
Green lawns can coexist with clean water and healthy marine life.
GENE M. MARCHAND/ENTERPRISE
Sixteen dead striped bass were among dead fish found on the shore of Little Pond.

With Agriculture over-fertilizing 100% and lawns being over-fertilized 500% it comes as no surprise . . .

In Falmouth Massachusetts, 16 striped bass were found dead from an algal bloom (pictured above). The town responded with a lawn care ordinance to spread fertilizer once in the spring and not the state standard of five times.  They went from 5 pounds nitrogen per 1,000 square feet to 1 pound nitrogen per 1,000 square feet on healthy lawns two year ago.  Today, the lawns of Falmouth are just as green as lawns of adjacent towns.  With your help we can do better.

Sign and comment on ORI’s letter urging Governor Baker to permit the other 350 MA municipalities to clean water by spreading fertilizer once, not five times a year.

In Indian River Lagoon, Florida, when beaches were fouled by algae, more than a hundred dolphins dead, and 1,000s of fish floating belly-up, five counties responded with responsible lawn care ordinances to fertilize lawns three times a year instead of four.  Martin County (2011), Indian River (2013), St. Lucie County (2014), Brevard County (2014), Volusia County (2014) don’t spread June 1 to September 30th when daylight is longest, waters warmest and algal blooms the worst.

One County, Palm Beach County, and one municipality in Martin County, Town of Jupiter Island, continue to spread fertilizer on their lawns four times a year.

Sign and comment on ORI’s letter urging County Commissioner and the Town Manager to reduce water pollution from off of lawns while saving lawn owners money by adopting a lawn care practice consistent with the other five counties of Indian River Lagoon.

Dylan Hansen’s recent video, “fertilizing beside dead fish,” is poignant because the nitrogen that fed the algae that killed the fish came from fertilizers. It may seem overly dramatic because these fish were killed during the winter release of muck from Lake Okeechobee into Indian River Lagoon.  However, the resemblance of dead fish on two distant shores is striking and unforgettable. Join with us to put an end to excessive fertilizing.

Your generous support will not only unclog waterways choked with weeds, you will help save striped bass from ocean dead zones, bare-footed beach goers from green slime, and swimmers from harmful algal blooms.

We need your financial help. Become a fundraiser with your own networking page.  Put the name of your favorite body of water into the title, add some images and personalize the message.

Please post your page on Facebook and personally invite by email some friends to match your support. If 5 people were to give to your page that would be a great step forward in meeting our goals.  And if most of those individuals could in turn ask friends, we’d be on our way to clean water.

Click “Become a Fundraiser,” to start your own fundraising campaign. Every dollar you raise from friends and family will go to improve essential fish habitats, amphibian, waders and duck habitats, too. Don’t forget the mussels that filter fresh water, clams and oysters filtering salt water. Tell us who’s in your waterway and support The Ocean River Institute and a river near you today.

Where We're Working On This
Save Our Rivers, Stop Killing Fish with Excessive Lawn Fertilizer. See where we're actively working on this.

How You Can Help
The Ocean River Institute provides individuals around the world with specific opportunities to make a difference saving wildlife, protecting ecosystems, in environmental education, science, and conservation.