Submitted by Alberta Health Services
RED DEER – Blue-green algae are currently present in the waters of Wizard Lake. Residents living near the shores of this lake, as well as visitors to this lake, are advised to take the following precautions:
• DO NOT DRINK WATER directly from, or allow your pets to drink water directly from, this lake. Boiling this contaminated lake water will not remove toxins. Provide an alternative source of drinking water for pets and livestock.
• DO NOT SWIM OR WADE or allow your pets to swim or wade in this lake.
• AVOID CONTACT with blue-green algae along the shoreline.
• DO NOT feed whole fish or fish trimmings from this lake to your pets.
• People may wish to limit their own consumption of whole fish and fish trimmings from this lake, as it is known that fish may store toxins in their liver.
• People can safely consume fish fillets from this lake.
Blue-green algae can produce a toxin (poison) that can cause serious illness to animals or humans who drink or have skin contact with water containing this toxin. Although weather and wind conditions can cause algae blooms to move from one location in the lake to another, the toxin can stay in the water even after algae have moved or disappeared.
As such, this advisory will remain in effect until further notice.
People who come in contact with or ingest water containing toxic blue-green algae may experience skin irritation, rash, sore throat, sore red eyes, swollen lips, fever, nausea and vomiting and/or diarrhea. Symptoms usually appear within one to three hours and resolve in one to two days. Symptoms in children are often more pronounced because they spend more time in the water and are more likely to accidentally ingest contaminated water.
People who consume contaminated water as a primary source for drinking water can develop more serious illnesses, such as liver damage, over time.
If you suspect a problem related to blue-green algae, or if you require further information on blue-green algae, please call Health Link Alberta at 1.866.408.5465 (LINK).
Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.