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Environment / Blue-green algae found in Westside loch

Photo: Kevin Odie

THE COUNCIL says blue-green algae has been found in the Loch of North House near Twatt.

Signs will be erected next to the loch warning that contact with algal scum should be avoided and for animals not to drink or enter the water.

Adjoining landowners have been advised of the situation, as have NHS Shetland and Shetland Angling Association.

Blue-green algae exist in fresh waters and can collect to form ‘blooms’ looking like blue-green paint, in the water or on the shore line.

It can be toxic and give rise to adverse medical effects, include skin rashes, eye irritations, vomiting and diarrhoea, and fever and pains in muscles and joints.

Toxic algae has caused deaths of livestock and dogs.

The treatment of water supplies removes blue-green algae and additional treatment may be applied to destroy or remove toxins should they arise.

The actions currently taken are precautionary.

If anyone suspects blue-green algae at other locations in Shetland, they can submit a notification via the ‘Bloomin’ Algae’ app, which is available to download for free.

For further information, contact environmental health on 01595 745250.

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