Blue-Green Algae bloom (cyanobacteria) / Australia / New Zealand
Posted: 05 Dec 2012 10:02 PM PST
EDIS Number: BH-20121206-37416-NZL Date / time: 06/12/2012 06:01:08 [UTC] Event: Biological Hazard Name of Hazard: Blue-Green Algae bloom (cyanobacteria) Area: Australia Country: New Zealand State/County: Southland
Description: The Otago Regional Council (ORC) is warning the public to avoid contact and keep their dogs away from two popular Otago swimming locations after the discovery of potentially toxic algal blooms over the past two days. ORC director of environmental information and science John Threlfall said Lake Waihola south of Dunedin and the upper Tomahawk lagoon contain the potentially toxic blue-green algae Anabaena lemmermannii. This algae, which is dark green, can produce a series of toxins which are then passed to the water and can be fatal to dogs and cause illness in people. Otago-Southland medical officer of health Dr Marion Poore said people swimming in water with increased levels of algal bloom have been known to develop allergic reactions: asthma, eye irritations, rashes, blistering around the mouth and nose, and gastro-intestinal disorders, including abdominal pain, cramps, and diarrhoea. People should not swim in Lake Waihola and Tomahawk lagoon, and other water users, including fishermen and boat users, should exercise caution, Dr Poore said. Any reaction depends on the type of toxins present, and the concentration of the toxin in the water. The higher the concentration of toxins and the longer the contact with the water, the more severe the symptoms are likely to be.
Not confirmed information!