Onondaga County Health Department has issued a Blue-Green Algae Advisory for Hiawatha Lake located in Onondaga Park in the City of Syracuse. This advisory was issued because a blue-green algae bloom has been identified in the lake; although this is not a public swimming area, people and their pets should avoid contact with any algae blooms, surface scums, and colored water.
Blue-green algae blooms can turn the water green and can form thick surface scums on the water. Certain types of blue-green algae can release toxins that may poison people and animals. Exposure to blue-green algae can cause skin or eye irritation or diarrhea and vomiting if ingested.
The Health Department recommends taking the following precautions:
• Do not drink the water
• Do not swim, wade, or fish near algae blooms or surface scums
• Do not let dogs wade, drink the water, or walk on shoreline debris
• Rinse yourself and pets with clean water if exposed to algae
Anyone who has come into contact with the algae bloom or surface scum and has skin or eye irritation or gastrointestinal illness should contact their health care provider.
Learn more about blue-green algae:
• Blue-Green Algae and Health: www.health.ny.gov/environmental/water/drinking/bluegreenalgae/
• Dogs and Algae Blooms: www.dec.ny.gov/docs/water_pdf/habspets.pdf
• NYS Department of Environmental Conservation: www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/77118.html