Blue green algae detected at dog park

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Water quality monitoring has detected high levels of potentially toxic blue-green algae at Harcourt Park, the City’s off-lead dog park in Crook Street.

Blue-green algae occur naturally and can be dangerous to animals. Characteristic signs of swallowing water containing high levels of algae include nausea, vomiting and disorientation, and can lead to more serious health problems.

City Manager Safe and Healthy Environments Caroline Grylls said members of the public were advised to keep dogs away from the water.

“Pet owners are encouraged to continue to exercise and socialise their dogs at the park but be vigilant in preventing them from entering or drinking the water,” Ms Grylls said.

The City will continue to closely monitor the situation at the park. Warning signs have been placed at various points around the area.

Caution should be exercised when near the water and people and animals that come into contact should wash their skin immediately in clean water. If your dog displays signs or symptoms of illness, increase monitoring and seek professional veterinary advice immediately.

Blue-green algae are very small and can be present in water where there are no obvious signs of a problem. Visual inspections of the water cannot be relied on to determine the presence of high algae levels.

Most blue-green algae blooms often disappear after a few weeks but when conditions remain favourable blooms can last longer. It is therefore not known how long algae will remain at high levels.

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