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Seminole Co. leaders work to clean up algae in Sweetwater Cove

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SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - For years, Seminole County has been spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to clean up a small chain of lakes.

Now, officials are looking to invest in new technology that could speed up the process.

The lakes, known as Sweetwater Cove, are in unincorporated Longwood and they flow into the Wekiva River.

Resident Dennis Marra said the algae has infested the part of Sweetwater Cove that lies in his backyard for years.

“You couldn’t even see the water, really,” Marra said.

He said the algae could hurt wildlife in the water.

“There are alligators, hawks and otters, and we need it to be cleaned up,” Marra said.

Channel 9’s Tim Barber stood in the lake and found the bottom is completely covered in algae.

Homeowners and Seminole County leaders are teaming up to buy special devices that use ultrasound technology to kill algae.

“It can rob the system of the dissolved oxygen that the organisms need to survive,” said Gloria Eby with Seminole County Lake Management.

The new devices will cost nearly $60,000, but officials said if they work, they will be cheaper and less harsh than the chemicals.

Marra hopes the sonic system will help Sweetwater Cove and the Wekiva River recover.

“It’s important to keep it clean as best we can,” he said.

The county wants to install the devices next month and officials will monitor their progress.