Haunted Lake, near Alix is under a blue-green algae advisory. (image courtesy of Reddit user)

Haunted Lake, near Alix is under a blue-green algae advisory. (image courtesy of Reddit user)

Blue-green algae bloom advisory issued for Central Alberta lake

Central Albertans encouraged to stay away from areas where blue-green algae is present

Blue-green algae has been found at Haunted Lake, near Alix.

Alberta Health Services issued an advisory Thursday to let users know about blue-green algae bloom that has been identified in areas of Haunted Lake.

Residents living near the shores of this lake, as well as visitors to this lake, are advised to take the following precautions:

Citizens should avoid all contact with the algae and wash with tap water if contact occurs as soon as possible. People are encouraged not to swim or wade in areas where the algae is present and not to feed fish from the lake to pets.

According to the release, people who come in contact with visible blue-green algae or who ingest water containing blue-green algae may experience skin irritation, rash, sore throat, sore red eyes, swollen lips, fever, nausea and vomiting and/or diarrhea. Symptoms usually appear within one to three hours and resolve in one to two days. Symptoms in children are often more pronounced.

Exposure to the bacteria may be fatal to pets.

As always, visitors and residents are reminded to never drink or cook with untreated water directly from any recreational body of water, including Haunted Lake, at any time. Boiling of this water will not remove the toxins produced by blue-green algae. An alternate source of drinking water should also be provided for pets and livestock, while this advisory is active.

Blue-green algae is naturally occurring and often becomes visible when weather conditions are calm. Appearing like scum, grass clippings, fuzz or globs on the surface of water, blue-green algae can be blue-green, greenish-brown, brown, and/or pinkish-red, and often smell musty or grassy.

The release also noted that areas of Haunted Lake in which the blue-green algae bloom is not visible can still be used for recreational purposes, even while health advisory is in place.