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Kansas Issues Health Advisories Over Blue-Green Algae in Lakes

September 2, 2022 by TWN Staff
Green Algae (EPA photo via Flickr)

TOPEKA, Kan. — The Kansas Department of Health and Environment and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks have issued several public health advisories in recent days due to the increased prevalence of blue-green algae in the state’s lakes. 

State officials warn that a harmful algal bloom can develop quickly and may look like foam, scum or paint floating on the water and be colored blue, bright green, brown or red. 

“If the water appears suspicious or there is decaying algae on the shore, avoid contact and keep dogs away,” a typical advisory says.

Toxins from the blooms can be absorbed by ingestion, inhalation of aerosols and even skin contact. 

Symptoms vary depending upon the type of exposure but can include rash, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, sore throat, and headache. 

Individuals who have come into contact with algae, or have a pet who has done so, should  rinse the area with clean, fresh water. Suspected HAB-related health incidents, whether human or animal, regardless of season, should be reported at https://www.kdhe.ks.gov/1163.

 

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