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Suffolk County issues warning about blue-green algae in Agawam Lake

On Wednesday county officials issued the same advisory for Lake Ronkonkoma, where the algae, also known as a cyanobacteria bloom, was still present as of Friday.

Suffolk County residents are advised to refrain from wading in, swimming in or otherwise coming in contact with the waters of Agawam Lake in Southampton, due to the presence of blue-green algae, county health officials said Friday.

Children and pets, also, should be kept clear of the area.

On Wednesday officials issued the same advisory for Lake Ronkonkoma, where the algae, also known as a cyanobacteria bloom, was still present as of Friday.

Naturally found in low numbers in lakes and streams, blue-green algae “can become abundant, forming blooms in shades of green, blue-green, yellow, brown or red,” health officials said. The organism can also create scum floating on the surface or cause water to assume a “paint-like appearance.”

If contact is made with the water, residents should wash it off immediately with clean water. Residents should get medical attention if any of these symptoms occur: nausea, vomiting or diarrhea; skin, eye or throat irritation; or allergic reactions or breathing difficulties, according to the county news release. If symptoms develop, residents should contact the Suffolk County Department of Health Services.

Learn more at Suffolk County’s website: www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Departments/HealthServices/EnvironmentalQuality/Ecology/MarineWaterQualityMonitoring/HarmfulAlgalBlooms/Cyanobacteria.aspx.

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