November 4, 2022
Media Contact: Brookie Crawford, firstname.lastname@example.org
Advisory Lifted for Harmful Algae Bloom in Lee Lake (Nottoway Lake), Nottoway County – 2022 Harmful Algae Response Season Complete
NOTTOWAY, Va. – The advisory VDH issued for a harmful algal “bloom” (HAB) in Lee Lake (Nottoway Lake) in Nottoway County just north of Blackstone has been lifted.
The Virginia HAB Task Force suspends response sampling at the end of October each year, when the recreational (swimming) season concludes and as temperatures begin cooling in natural waters. This enables conservation of response resources for peak swimming use. Algae blooms which are still present in October/November in areas of a waterbody may persist into late fall and possibly winter months. While cyanobacteria concentrations fluctuate during seasonal transitions, resources are not available to continue the response efforts in off-season months.
Algae blooms can occur when warm water and nutrients combine to make conditions favorable for algae growth. Most algae species are harmless, however, some species may produce irritating compounds or toxins.
The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and the Virginia Harmful Algal Bloom Task Force, which includes the VDH, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the Old Dominion University Phytoplankton Laboratory, will resume response efforts in May 2023, weather permitting.
The public should avoid discolored water or scums that are green or bluish-green because they are more likely to contain toxins. Activities where full body submersion is not likely to occur, such as fishing, boating, flat-water kayaking, can continue with appropriate caution.
To prevent illness from potentially toxic algae blooms:
- Avoid contact with any area of the lake where water is green or an advisory sign is posted, WHEN IN DOUBT, STAY OUT!
- Do not allow children or pets to drink from natural bodies of water.
- Keep children and pets out of the areas experiencing a harmful algae bloom and quickly wash them off with plenty of fresh, clean water after coming into contact with algae scum or bloom water.
- Seek medical/veterinarian care if you or your animals experience symptoms after swimming in or near an algal bloom.
- Properly clean fish by removing skin and discarding all internal organs, and cooking fish to the proper temperature to ensure fish filets are safe to eat.
- Contact the Virginia Harmful Algal Bloom Hotline at 1-888-238-6154 if you suspect you experienced health-related effects following exposure to a bloom.
For more information visit www.SwimHealthyVA.com.
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