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Not-so-good news: the lake has somewhat changed colour.

Beginning last Friday, September 14, we began to observe the deterioration of the colour in the lake. The Renaissance Brome Lake team (RBL) immediately set out determine the clarity of the water in the deepest part of the lake with its Secchi monitoring disk. This part of the lake is known as the ‘’fosse’’, or pit (the deepest part of the lake). The results showed a clarity level of 1.8 metres in depth, which means that we must keep an eye on the situation.  This was predictable given the unseasonal days of heat we have been experiencing.
 
Several citizens informed the town that they had noticed the presence of cyanobacteria, complete with surface scum. RBL and VLB then informed the MDDELCC (Quebec’s ministry of sustainable development and climate change) about the matter.)
 
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU SEE CYANOBACTERIA (BLUE-GREEN ALGAE) IN A WATERCOURSE NEAR YOU?
 

  • Avoid all contact with the water, including swimming in it, or practising an aquatic sport. Using a wet suit will not protect your skin;
  • Avoid consuming fish or other aquatic species from the zone in question;
  • Do not drink the water nor boil any food because the toxins will not be eliminated);
  • Keep all animals away from the water and don’t provide them with any of this water to drink;
  • Applying algaecide to destroy cyanobacteria is useless, since this process frees up large masses of toxins when cells die off;
  • Avoid using this water even in your outdoor pool or as an outside shower;
  • If your drinking water comes from a municipal drinking system, it is safe to consume, unless you are advised otherwise;
  • Wait from one to two weeks after the disappearance of the cyanobacteria before resuming your swimming or other aquatic activities. (Source: Régie Régionale de la Santé et des Services Sociaux, Montérégie, August 2001).

Potential effects on your health
Certain types of blue-green algae produce toxic substances that can cause problems to your health. For example, you can develop gastroenteritis symptoms or feel some skin or throat irritation if you touch or consume this water.  
If you have been in any form of direct contact with the water blooms or scum, you might experience the following symptons:

  • stomach aches;
  • diarrhea;
  • vomiting;
  • headaches;
  • fever;
  • skin irritation;
  • sore throat.

If one or more of these symptoms appear in the 24- to 48-hour period following this contact, please call Info-Santé 811 or consult your doctor.
 
Additional information is available on several websites including: