With the warmer weather picking up in the Cariboo, it’s important to be aware of algae bloom that could be in your favourite lake.
Algae is a natural part of the aquatic ecosystem for lakes, and algae bloom can occur throughout the Interior Health region.
Interior Health says that blue-green algae or Cyanobacteria can produce different types of toxins that can be poisonous to people, pets and livestock. Cyanobacteria blooms cause the water to look bad and may also smell bad.
Interior Health noted that there are a couple important ways to reduce the risk of Algae harming you. First is to rinse off with clean water after swimming, and the second is to not consume lake water. there are also other precautions you can take.
- If there is bloom, always use caution and avoid all direct contact with it. If contact is made, rinse your body with clean water.
- If you see a bloom, recreational activities are discouraged, such as swimming.
- Consider using an alternate source of drinking water, if the bloom in in your drinking water source. Boiling the water will not remove any toxins
“There are some environmental factors that make it more suitable for algae to bloom.” says Fatemeh Sabet, Medical Health Officer for Interior Health.
“For example, the environments with shallow water, still water is more suitable environments for the algae bloom.”
For more information, you can visit Interior Health’s Cyanobacteria page.