Humboldt Health Alert Press Release:
Blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria, are simple plants found naturally in water and wet environments. Blue-green algae prefer warm stagnant nutrient rich water and are found most often in ponds, lakes, and slow moving rivers. Some species of blue-green algae produce toxins, so skin contact and ingestion can be dangerous. Children and pets are at the greatest risk of serious toxic effects from blue-green algae.
A bloom is a build-up of algae that creates a green, blue-green, white, or brown coloring on the surface of the water, sometimes occurring as mats or scum.
Although blooms can occur at any time of year, they occur most often in the warmer months between June and September.
In Humboldt County, Big Lagoon and the Eel River have seen recent blooms.
To stay safe, always assume that a blue-green algal bloom has the potential to be toxic. Do not drink or swim in water with scum layers or blooms.
See the attached flyer from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) for more information.