Harmful algae bloom advisories for Wyoming waters lifted - Casper, WY Oil City News
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Harmful algae bloom advisories for Wyoming waters lifted

A blue-green algae bloom at Pathfinder Reservoir in 2018. (Wyoming DEQ)

CASPER, Wyo. — Several harmful cyanobacteria bloom advisories have been lifted in Wyoming.

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department announced on Wednesday, Nov. 20 that advisories for the following bodies of water have been lifted:

  • Leazenby Lake
  • Saratoga Lake
  • Toltec Reservoir
  • Wheatland Reservoir #1
  • Wheatland Reservoir #3
  • Festo Lake

“All waters are once again safe for recreation,” Game and Fish says.

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According to the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality, only one harmful bloom advisory remains in effect and that is for Keyhole Reservoir in Crook County.

“Cyanobacteria…can form blooms that produce toxins and other irritants that pose a risk to human, pet and livestock health,” Wyoming DEQ says.

“Advisories are issued by the Wyoming Department of Health when cyanobacterial cell densities and/or cyanotoxin concentrations may pose a health risk to people in areas where cyanobacterial blooms occur.”

The following tips are recommended when harmful blooms are present:

-Avoid contact with water in the vicinity of the bloom, especially in areas where cyanobacteria are dense and form scum.

-Do not ingest water from the bloom. Boiling, filtration and/or other treatments will not remove toxins.

-Rinse fish with clean water and eat only the fillet portion.

-Avoid water spray from the bloom.

-Do not allow pets or livestock to drink water near the bloom, eat bloom material or lick fur after contact.

-If people, pets or livestock come into contact with a bloom, rinse off with clean water as soon as possible.

Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality

If people or animals come in contact with blooms and experience “adverse health effects after exposure,” they should seek immediate medical or veterinary attention.

“Young children, pregnant women, people with weak immune systems and animals are especially at risk,” DEQ says. “Questions regarding general health risks and symptoms related to a cyanobacterial bloom can be referred to Dr. Karl Musgrave, State Public Health Veterinarian and Environmental Health Epidemiologist with WDH at 307-777-5825.”

People can report waters where they suspect harmful blooms are present online or by calling (307) 777-7501.