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Health officials remind residents that there is still an advisory in effect for harmful algal blooms in Ford Lake

Residents, visitors advised to avoid touching algae or scum

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WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – Health officials are reminding residents and visitors that a public health advisory for harmful algal blooms in Ford Lake in Ypsilanti remains in effect.

The initial advisory was issued in August. People and pets should avoid direct body contact with the scums in the lake, water that is blue-green, or water that looks like it has a green sheen or spilled paint on its surface. Do not swallow the lake water.

READ: Help Me Hank: Keeping your pets safe from toxic algae

Some algal blooms are made of cyanobacteria that have the ability to produce toxins, causing a harmful algal bloom.

A Ford Lake resident notified the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services of a suspected harmful algal bloom earlier this summer. They said they saw an area of the water that had a “spilled paint” look on the surface. Testing confirmed microcystin in the water.

READ: Washtenaw County residents cautioned about potential toxic algal bloom in Ford Lake

What you need to know

  • You can swim in the water, but stay away from water that has scums or mats, looks like spilled paint, or has colored streaks.
  • Keep children and pets away from algae in the water or on the shore.
  • Do not let pets or livestock drink the water or eat scum on the shore.
  • All fish should be caught and released and not consumed. Ford Lake is under a Do Not Eat Fish Advisory.
  • Do not drink water from lakes, ponds, or rivers.
  • Rinse people and pets off after swimming.
  • When in doubt, keep people and pets out of the water.
  • Call you doctor or veterinarian if you or your pet get sick after going in the water.

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