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Casper’s Morad Park to be tested for harmful algae blooms; dogs and people should avoid ponds

Ponds at Morad Park are under investigation for possible harmful algae blooms. (Wyoming DEQ)

CASPER, Wyo. — The City of Casper is advising people to keep themselves and their pets away from small ponds along the southeast pathway at Morad Park.

The ponds will be tested for possible harmful cyanobacterial blooms, also known as harmful algae blooms, after Casper Parks staff reported “a small concentration of an algae-like substance in a contained area in Morad Park to the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) earlier this week,” the city said in a press release Thursday.

Wyoming DEQ is expected to test samples next week to determine whether or not harmful algae blooms are present.

“HCBs are dense concentrations of cyanobacteria that look similar to algae and can cause adverse health impacts to humans, dogs, and other animals,” the release noted.

City staff have put up caution tape and posted signs around small ponds as a precautionary measure. As direct contact with water presents the only risk — if the ponds turn out positive for HCBs — the park and trails will remain open, the release said.

“The City of Casper is working closely with Wyoming DEQ to keep Morad Park a safe, beautiful place for families,” Parks Supervisor Katy Hallock said. “Right now, we’re asking that everyone stay away from the small ponds until we know more.”

The Wyoming DEQ offers answers to frequently asked questions about harmful algae blooms.

“The City of Casper is adhering to all DEQ protocols and will report sample results when they become available,” the release added.