Toxic algae blooms discovered at four Nebraska lakes, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services confirmed

LINCOLN, Nebraska – Due to the presence of poisonous algae blooms, people are encouraged to exercise caution in four different lakes in Nebraska.

According to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the following bodies of water are contaminated: Bluestem Lake in Lancaster County; Maskenthine Reservoir in Stanton County; Willow Creek Reservoir in Pierce County; and Iron Horse Trail Lake in Pawnee County.

Toxic blue-green algae blooms have been found in the lakes, which is a sign of the presence of harmful algae. The microcystin concentration in the samples, which were taken earlier in the week, was higher than eight parts per billion. Microcystin is the toxin that was released by the algae. Above eight parts per billion is sufficient for a health warning.

Whenever there is a risk of algae bloom, warning signs are erected to inform the general public, and swimming beaches are closed.

Although the public is permitted to fish and use boats, they should avoid getting too close to the water. It is also recommended that you do not let your dogs drink from the lake or swallow any of the water.

People are still allowed to use the public lake areas for activities such as camping and other outside pursuits.

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