KDHE issues public health advisories for blue-green algae in Kansas lakes

Better Health & Wellness

Blue-green algae (KSN File Photo)

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), in conjunction with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT), has issued its list of public health advisories for Kansas lakes due to blue-green algae Thursday.



  • Brown State Fishing Lake, Brown County
  • El Dorado Reservoir, Butler County
  • Ford State Fishing Lake, Ford County
  • Milford Lake Zone A, Geary County
  • Horsethief Reservoir, Hodgeman County (downgraded from warning 9/24)
  • Prairie Center Park Pond, Johnson County (new 9/24)
  • Rose’s Pond, Johnson County (new 9/24)
  • Yates Center Kids’ Fishing Pond, Woodson County

Advisories Lifted Sept. 24, 2020

  • Unit G Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Area, Linn County
  • Webster Reservoir, Rooks County

KDHE recommends the following precautions be taken with the issued warning:

  • Lake water is not safe to drink for pets or livestock.
  • Lake water, regardless of blue-green algae status, should never be consumed by humans.
  • Water contact should be avoided.
  • Fish may be eaten if they are rinsed with clean water and only the fillet portion is consumed, while all other parts are discarded.
  • Do not allow pets to eat dried algae.
  • If lake water contacts skin, wash with clean water as soon as possible.
  • Avoid areas of visible algae accumulation.

A watch means that blue-green algae have been detected and a harmful algal bloom is present or likely to develop. People are encouraged to avoid areas of algae accumulation and keep pets and livestock away from the water.

KDHE recommends the following precautions be taken during a watch status:

  • Signage will be posted at all public access locations.
  • Water may be unsafe for humans/animals.
  • Avoid areas of algae accumulation and do not let people/pets eat dried algae or drink contaminated water.
  • Swimming, wading, skiing, and jet skiing are discouraged near visible blooms.
  • Boating and fishing are safe. However, inhalation of the spray may affect some individuals. Avoid direct contact with water, and wash with clean water after any contact.
  • Clean fish well with potable water and eat fillet portion only.

KDHE said Kansans should be aware that blooms are unpredictable. They can develop rapidly and may float around the lake, requiring visitors to exercise their best judgment.

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