Toxic algae warning in Tasman
Toxic algal blooms have reached dangerous levels in Tasman district rivers.
Tasman District Council (TDC) has issued a warning that levels of toxic algae in the lower Wai-iti and Waimea rivers are ‘‘a serious risk to dogs and any persons’’ who consume it.
‘‘All dog owners and parents with toddlers should become familiar with what the toxic algae looks and feels like. It is usually only toxic if consumed by mouth.’’
The council advises keeping dogs on leads if algae is seen, and not allowing dogs to drink from, play in, or scavenge in or near the water.
‘‘If you, your dog or other animals are sick after being in or near an affected river, consult your vet and the council immediately.’’
Toxic algae often forms dark, slimy mats in rivers and on rocks.
People wanting to cool off with a swim are in luck, though – the council said popular swimming sites on the Lee and Roding rivers were not affected.
The toxic blooms happen during extended periods of low water levels in the rivers. The warning will be in place until significant rainfall can flush the algae out.
Anyone who sees toxic algae in a river in the district is asked to report it to the council.