AFTER extensive water sampling, a recent suspected algal bloom at Mullinger Swamp has been confirmed as blue green algae.
Natural Resources South East public lands team leader Brian Robins said results from the swamp – located in the Kybybolite district – confirmed a high concentration of blue green algae.
“The algal bloom is a result of a number of factors including higher temperatures, low water flow, sunlight and nutrients present in the swamp,” Mr Robins said.
“Warning signs have been installed at the site and the Department for Environment and Water is warning the public to avoid any direct contact with the affected water.
“Contact with blue green algae can cause reactions like itchiness, rash and sore eyes.”
Mr Robins said warned of the risks if the algae was swallowed.
“It can also cause gastroenteritis, nausea or vomiting if ingested,” he said.
“Also avoid eating any fish, shellfish or crustaceans such as yabbies from the area.
“We urge you to keep dogs and other pets away from the water as well as they are highly susceptible to serious illness.”
Mr Robins said people who come into contact with contaminated water should immediately wash the area with fresh water and seek medical attention if experiencing illness.
The Department for Environment and Water together with Parks Victoria will continue to monitor conditions and will remove signage once the water is safe.