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Blue-green algae found at Goose Islands in Lake Nipissing

Monday, September 10, 2012   by: Kate AdamsNorth Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit
News Release

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The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit wishes to advise all cottagers and visitors at the Goose Islands in Lake Nipissing that a bloom of blue-green algae has been detected at latitude 46.1539 N, longitude 79.4350 W.

Sample results indicate that this bloom is toxin producing, and the bacteria toxin concentration is above the limit for drinking water. The Health Unit advises residents who have cottages near this area and anyone visiting the site, to take the following precautions for three weeks after the bloom has disappeared:

 Do not use the water from the Goose Islands, Lake Nipissing for drinking, cooking and bathing. Use an alternate source of water for these purposes.

 You CANNOT destroy the toxins by boiling the water or using home water treatment devices.

 Do not swim or participate in other water sport activities near the site or where the bloom is visible at the Goose Islands.

 Do not use the water near the site for pets or livestock.
For more information about Blue-Green Algae, visit: healthunit.biz/EH-bluegreenalgaeinfo.asp
Quick Facts

 Blue-green algae, known as ‘pond scum’, are primitive microscopic bacteria that live in fresh water. They are usually hard to see, but during hot weather, they can rapidly grow to form a large mass, called a bloom.

 Toxins can irritate the skin and, if ingested, cause diarrhea and vomiting. At high enough levels, the toxins may cause liver and nervous system damage.

 If skin contact does occur, wash with soap and water, or rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove algae.

 Blue-green algae thrive in warm, shallow, undisturbed water that receives a lot of sunlight and is rich in phosphorus and nitrogen. Animal and human waste and fertilizers contain phosphorus and nitrogen.

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