Cyanobacteria (Blue-Green Algae) Health Advisories

Current Cyanobacteria Advisories


About Cyanobacteria (Blue-Green Algae)

If there is a cyanobacteria advisory for a body of water you plan on visiting, take these precautions:

  • Avoid all contact with cyanobacterial blooms. If contact occurs, wash with tap water as soon as possible.
  • Do not swim or wade or allow your pets to swim or wade in any areas where cyanobacteria is visible.  
  • Do not feed whole fish or fish trimmings from this lake to your pets. 
  • Consider limiting human consumption of whole fish and fish trimmings from this lake, as it is known that fish may store toxins in their liver. (People can safely consume fish fillets from this lake).

Visitors and residents are reminded to never drink or cook with untreated water directly from any recreational body of water at any time. Boiling of this water will not remove the toxins produced by cyanobacteria. An alternate source of drinking water should also be provided for pets and livestock, while an advisory is active.

Cyanobacteria is naturally occurring, and often becomes visible when weather conditions are calm. Appearing like scum, grass clippings, fuzz, or globs on the surface of water, cyanobacteria can be blue-green, greenish-brown, brown, and/or pinkish-red, and often smell musty or grassy. 

Advisories are in effect until rescind notices are issued.

People or animals who come in contact with visible cyanobacteria, or who ingest water containing cyanobacteria, may experience:

  • skin irritation
  • rash
  • sore throat
  • sore, red eyes
  • swollen lips
  • fever
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Symptoms usually appear within one to three hours and resolve in one to two days. Symptoms in children are often more pronounced; however, all humans are at risk of these symptoms. Exposure to the bacteria may be fatal to pets. If animals display these symptoms contact a veterinarian immediately.

Weather and wind conditions can cause algae blooms to move from one location in a body of water to another.

If you suspect a problem related to cyanobacteria, or if you require further information on cyanobacteria, please call Health Link at 811.

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