BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Saturday morning the Kern County Public Health Services Department told 23ABC News that health officials have discovered harmful blue-green algae in Lake Isabella and have now issued a health advisory to the Lake area.
Officials said they are urging boaters, dog owners, and other recreational lake users to exercise caution and observe signage that warns visitors to avoid active algal blooms when visiting certain areas within Lake Isabella.
Public Health said that officials recently obtained water samples from 17 locations in Lake Isabella. Five of those locations indicated the presence of potentially harmful blue-green algae (cyanotoxin) at the cautionary level, one area at warning level, and five areas at the danger level.
Officials told 23ABC News that, "Effective immediately, Public Health is issuing an advisory for Lake Isabella and health advisory signs are being posted that advise people using the lake to use caution and stay away from algae and scum in these designated areas."
Cyanobacteria are capable of producing toxins, which have the potential to harm people, pets, wildlife, or livestock. Dogs and children are most likely to be affected because of their smaller body size, increased potential to ingest water, and tendency to stay in the water for longer periods according to health officials.
Public Health said, exposure to cyanobacteria and associated toxins can cause eye irritation, skin rash, mouth ulcers, vomiting, diarrhea and cold or flu-like symptoms. Officials said, if you or your pet come into contact with algae and are experiencing symptoms, please seek medical treatment immediately.
For more information you can visit their interactive website.
Officials also told 23ABC News that they will continue to monitor and test Lake Isabella. They also said that their website is updated regularly with test results and notification of any presence of potentially harmful blue-green algae in Lake Isabella.