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  • OutThere Colorado

    Deadly 'algae' closes popular lake until further notice in Colorado

    By By Spencer McKee,

    24 days ago

    The summer season has arrived, and with warmer temperatures comes the threat of dangerous blue-green algae in Colorado's waters.

    The discovery of blue-green algae has already resulted in the closure of the popular Windsor Lake in the Town of Windsor, with all recreational activities at the body of water restricted until further notice.

    Blue-green algae is actually a bacteria called cyanobacteria that thrives in warm, nutrient-rich water. It can grow quickly when a 'bloom' takes place under the right conditions, capable of causing illness in humans and animals when consumed, inhaled, or touched. In Colorado, this has proven particularly problematic with dogs, as dogs can tend to lap up water sources without knowledge of potential risks.

    Symptoms that come from related illnesses include vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, eye irritation, coughing, sore throats, and a headache, with symptoms generally showing up about two days after exposure. In severe cases , shock, liver failure, respiratory arrest, and death can occur.

    In terms of Windsor Lake, there is some good news – water quality already seems to be improving thanks to efforts taken by Windsor Parks, Recreation and Culture. The water is being tested again on Monday and the closure is set to be re-evaluated. It's also worth noting that those seeking water in the area might want to consider The Eastman Park River Experience, where tubes can be rented.

    Many of Colorado's water sources are tested regularly for risks and hazards, including blue-green algae, but it's important to be aware of potential concerns while recreating this summer. Never consume water from a natural source without purifying it first and only do so where consumption is allowed. Dog owners should also be cautious of water sources being consumed by their pups.

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