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Courtesy of Utah Lake Commission

Provo Bay’s algal bloom advisory lifted after 3 weeks

By Lauren Bennett, | Posted - Jul. 9, 2019 at 8:55 p.m.

PROVO — An algal bloom advisory for Provo Bay first issued June 24 was lifted Tuesday by Utah County Health Department officials following two consecutive weeks of samples testing below advisory levels.

The department issued the warning after samples collected on June 18 showed high cyanobacteria cell-count concentrations, also commonly known as blue-green algae because of its color in the water.

However, water samples collected by the Utah Division of Water Quality on June 27 and July 3 showed cyanobacteria cell-count and toxins were below recreation health-based thresholds, according to the division's website.

Provo Bay’s advisory was the second for Utah Lake this summer; the first was in May when microcystins — the harmful toxin produced by the algal blooms — were detected in Saratoga Springs Marina. That advisory was lifted in mid-June.

Utah Department of Environmental Quality provides updates on Utah Lake’s algal bloom conditions for the summer on its website.

According to the Utah Department of Health, harmful algal blooms can affect the liver. Symptoms including vomiting, diarrhea and headaches. Contact with harmful algal blooms can also cause eye irritation, rash or hives. Symptoms in pets may include weakness, fatigue, difficulty breathing and vomiting.

Utah Lake has dealt with large-scale algal blooms in the past, in both 2016 and 2017. At one point in July 2016, an algal bloom covered about 90 percent of the lake.

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