Nova Scotia

Lake Ainslie algae bloom has spread to parts of Margaree River

Blue-green algae can produce toxins and can be harmful to people and pets. A bloom discovered in Lake Ainslie in Cape Breton last month has spread into parts of the Margaree River.

Blue-green algae can produce toxins and can be harmful to people and pets

People who come into contact with blue-green algae may experience skin irritation, rash, sore throat, sore red eyes, swollen lips, fever, nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea. (Submitted by Nova Scotia Environment)

Update, Aug. 21, 2019: The Nova Scotia Department of Environment says algae blooms are no longer visible in Lake Ainslie and the Margaree River.

 

A blue-algae bloom discovered in Lake Ainslie in Cape Breton last month has spread into parts of the Margaree River.

Blue-green algae can produce toxins and can be harmful to people and pets.

Environment Department spokesperson Rachel Boomer said the bloom has moved into the southwest branch of the Margaree River and the lower Margaree River beyond where the river branches off in different directions, also known as the Forks.

"A bloom can move, so people should look for it before using the water," she said. "We're asking people to take precautions in this area."

Blue-green algae found at Sandy Lake

On Wednesday, the Halifax Regional Municipality issued a warning about a blue-green algae bloom in Sandy Lake in Bedford. The lake was closed to swimming, but reopened on Thursday.

People should take the following precautions if they come across a blue-green algae bloom:

  • Avoid water contact. If contact occurs, wash with tap water as soon as possible.
  • Do not swim or wade (or allow pets to swim or wade) in any areas where blue-green algae is visible or in areas where a risk advisory has been issued.
  • Don't use the water for any purpose, such as drinking, cooking, washing produce, showering, bathing or brushing teeth.

Boomer said people should contact the Environment Department if they spot a blue-green algae bloom.

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