Health Dept urges caution
With Labor Day weekend looming and many lake dwellers looking to take to the water for one of the last summer flings, the appearance of algae blooms on Hess Lake resulted in this information for our friends at the Health Department:
District Health Department #10 (DHD#10) was notified by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) that algae blooms were detected on Hess Lake in Newaygo County.
Just recently, after being notified about what looked like algae blooms on Hess Lake, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) took samples on August 24, 2022, which were sent to the MDHHS lab where results came back positive for microcystin, an algal toxin released by some types of algae in lakes or rivers. Algae blooms can form when there are high nutrient levels within bodies of water along with warm temperatures. Signs have been placed in and around the boat launch area to notify individuals to avoid contact with the water.
“Algae blooms look like a green mat right on top of the water that smells bad and has a gelatinous texture to them,” stated Michael Kramer, Environmental Health Director for DHD#10. “The algal toxins that are released can be harmful to aquatic life, pets, and humans so it is very important to avoid these areas.”
Below are some steps to take when near waterways:
People and pets can experience the following symptoms after exposure to algae blooms: