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Public Health Advisories for Kansas Lakes Due to Blue-Green Algae

Kansas Department of Health and Environment
Kansas Department of Health and Environment

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) have issued several public health advisories for Kansas lakes due to blue-green algae.

Active Advisories

Warning

Gathering Pond at Milford, Geary County

Milford Lake Zone C, Geary County

Harvey County East Lake, Harvey County

Altamont City Lake Idle Hour Main Lake, Labette County

Big Hill Lake, Labette County

Parsons Lake, Labette County (new)

Marion County Lake, Marion County (upgraded 7/22)

Melvern Outlet Pond, Osage County (upgraded 7/22)

Webster Reservoir, Rooks County

Jerry Ivey Pond, Saline County

Hargis Lake, Sumner County (new)

Big Eleven Lake, Wyandotte County

Watch

Brown State Fishing Lake, Brown County

Mission Lake Horton, Brown County

Milford Lake Zones A and B, Geary County

South Lake, Johnson County

Altamont City Lake Idle Hour North Lake, Labette County

Marion Reservoir, Marion County (downgraded 7/22)

Overbook City Lake, Osage County

Agra City Lake, Phillips County

Atwood Township Lake, Rawlins County

Advisories Lifted 7/22/21

Herington Reservoir (New City Lake), Dickinson County

Herington City Lake (Old Lake), Dickinson County

Geary State Fishing Lake, Geary County

Horsethief Reservoir, Hodgeman County

Linn Valley Lake, Linn County

River Pond below Tuttle Reservoir, Riley County

When a warning is issued, KDHE recommends the following precautions be taken:

  • Lake water is not safe to drink for pets or livestock.
  • Lake water, regardless of blue-green algae status, should never be consumed by humans.
  • Water contact should be avoided.
  • Fish may be eaten if they are rinsed with clean water and only the fillet portion is consumed, while all other parts are discarded.
  • Do not allow pets to eat dried algae.
  • If lake water contacts skin, wash with clean water as soon as possible.
  • Avoid areas of visible algae accumulation.

A watch means that blue-green algae has been detected and a harmful algal bloom is present or likely to develop. People are encouraged to avoid areas of algae accumulation and keep pets and livestock away from the water.

During the watch status, KDHE recommends the following precautions be taken:

  • Signage will be posted at all public access locations.
  • Water may be unsafe for humans and animals.
  • Avoid areas of algae accumulation and do not let people or pets eat dried algae or drink contaminated water.
  • Swimming, wading, skiing and jet skiing are discouraged near visible blooms.
  • Boating and fishing are safe. However, inhalation of the spray may affect some individuals. Avoid direct contact with water, and wash with clean water after any contact.
  • Clean fish well with potable water and eat fillet portion only.

KDHE investigates publicly-accessible bodies of water for blue-green algae when the agency receives reports of potential algae blooms in Kansas lakes. Based on credible field observation and sampling results, KDHE reports on potentially harmful conditions.

Signs of a possible bloom include if there is scum, a paint-like surface or the water is bright green. Avoid contact and keep pets away. These are indications that a harmful bloom may be present. Pet owners should be aware that animals that swim in or drink water affected by a harmful algal bloom or eat dried algae along the shore may become seriously ill or die.

For information on blue-green algae and reporting potential harmful algal blooms, please visit www.kdheks.gov/algae-illness/index.htm.

(Information courtesy KDHE.)