August 20, 2014

State issues health alert for Kirkman’s Cove

State health officials have issued health alerts for toxic blue-green algae at Kirkman’s Cove in Richardson County.

The state has taken samples at 49 public lakes in Nebraska since May. Samples taken earlier this week at Kirkman’s Cove were above the state’s health alert threshold of 20 parts per billion (ppb) of total microcystin (a toxin released by certain strains of blue-green algae.) The lake will need to register two consecutive weeks of readings below the threshold before the state lifts the alert.

Signs have been posted at Kirksman’s Cove to advise the public to uses caution. Designated swimming beaches have been closed. Recreational boating and fishing are permitted, but the public is advised to not ingest the lake water and to stay out of the water. Camping, picnics and other outdoor activities are permissible.

Sampling results for toxic algae and bacteria will be updated every Friday and posted on Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality’s web site.

PDF Toxic algae fact sheet