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Blue-green algae blooms appeared earlier and on more lakes this summer than usual. Learn more about these blooms and the health risks they can pose.

Contact information
For information on Lakes in Wisconsin, contact:
Wisconsin DNR Lakes
Division of Water
Bureau of Water Quality
Blue-Green Algae Contacts

Blue-Green Algae

Measures You Can Take to Protect Yourself

  • Do not swim in water that looks like "pea soup", green or blue paint, or that has a scum layer or puffy blobs floating on the surface
  • Do not boat, water ski, etc. over such water (people can be exposed through inhalation)
  • Do not let children play with scum layers, even from shore
  • Do not let pets or livestock swim in, or drink, waters experiencing blue-green algae blooms
  • Do not treat surface waters that are experiencing blue-green algae blooms with any herbicide or algaecide-- toxins are released into the water when blue-green algae cells die
  • Always take a shower after coming into contact with any surface water (whether or not a blue-green algae bloom appears to be present; surface waters may contain other species of potentially harmful bacteria and viruses)

Measures You Can Take to Help Reduce Future Blue-Green Algae Blooms

  • Maintain native vegetation along shorelines as buffer areas
  • Minimize activities that result in erosion
  • Reduce the amount of fertilizer used on lawns
  • Use only phosphorus-free fertilizer when possible
  • Fix leaking septic systems
  • Use only phosphorus-free detergents in dishwashing machines