District Council issues blue-green algae alert

03rd August 2005

The District Council has repeated its warning to dog owners to keep their pets out of Batchworth Lake. An increase in the naturally occurring, but highly toxic, blue-green algae has become apparent and water samples are currently being tested by experts.

The algae can cause vomiting and diarrhoea if swallowed or if it comes into contact with the skin. Ingestion may also cause liver failure in pets.

Council Leader Ann Shaw said:

"Batchworth Lake and the Aquadrome are a lovely place to visit and to walk your dog. We already have warning signs around the lake to protect humans and pets from the real risks of swimming in the lake. The hot weather may well have speeded up the algae's growth and as a result we are repeating our warning. The risk is serious - there have previously been reports of dogs dying from the algae in other parts of the country. However, as long as contact with the water is avoided, a visit to the Lake is perfectly safe."

Certain water based activities are expected to continue with certain restrictions. Local clubs, including fishing and water-skiing groups, have been informed and are aware of necessary precautionary measures.