Don't swim in Lake Banook, Lake Micmac, HRM advises

Halifax Regional Municipality issued a blue-green algae bloom risk advisory for the two Dartmouth lakes on Tuesday.

Due to the presence of blue-green algae blooms, residents are being asked not to swim or wade in the lakes

Due to the presence of algae blooms, residents are being asked not to swim in two Dartmouth lakes. (Megan Thomas/CBC)

Halifax Regional Municipality has issued a blue-green algae bloom risk advisory for Lake Banook and Lake Micmac in Dartmouth, N.S.

Due to the presence of algae blooms, residents are being asked not to swim in the lakes.

Some types of algae produce toxins during blooms. When the blooms decay, the toxins can be released into the water posing a risk to people and their pets, the municipality said in a news release Tuesday.

If lake users come into contact with blue-green algae blooms, they're advised to wash with tap water as soon as possible.

The municipality said people and their pets should not swim or wade in areas where the blue-green algae is visible.

People are also advised not to eat any fish that has come from Lake Banook and Lake Micmac.

If someone does ingest water containing blue-green algae, the municipality said they may experience the following symptoms:

  • Skin irritation.
  • Rash.
  • Sore throat.
  • Sore red eyes.
  • Swollen lips.
  • Fever.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea.

Children and people with compromised immune systems are at a higher risk of getting sick, the municipality said. 

Municipal staff collected water samples to determine the concentration of toxins in the two lakes. The next set of test results is expected by Thursday, Aug. 23.

An algae bloom along the shore of Lake Micmac at Shubie Park in Dartmouth closed the area to swimming earlier this month. Two areas of Lake Banook were also closed due to suspected algae blooms.

Three dogs died after swimming or playing near the St. John River in Fredericton this summer, and it was later determined blue-green algae was the cause of their deaths.