TOPEKA – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), in conjunction with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT), has revised its list of public health advisories for Kansas lakes due to blue-green algae. Camp Hawk Lake in Harvey County is now in a warning status.
When a warning is issued, KDHE recommends the following precautions be taken:
Lake water is not safe to drink for pets or livestock.
Lake water, regardless of blue-green algae status, should never be consumed by humans.
Water contact should be avoided.
Fish may be eaten if they are rinsed with clean water and only the fillet portion is consumed, while all other parts are discarded.
Do not allow pets to eat dried algae.
If lake water contacts skin, wash with clean water as soon as possible.
Avoid areas of visible algae accumulation.
KDHE investigates publicly-accessible bodies of water for blue-green algae when the agency receives reports of potential algae blooms in Kansas lakes. Based on credible field observation and sampling results, KDHE reports on potentially harmful conditions.
Kansans should be aware that blooms are unpredictable. They can develop rapidly and may float around the lake, requiring visitors to exercise their best judgment. If there is scum, a paint-like surface or the water is bright green, avoid contact and keep pets away. These are indications that a harmful bloom may be present. Pet owners should be aware that animals that swim in or drink water affected by a harmful algal bloom or eat dried algae along the shore may become seriously ill or die.