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For Immediate Release
June 3, 2021

Contact

Amanda McQuaid
(603) 848-8094 | HAB@des.nh.gov

State Issues Cyanobacteria Advisory for Webster Lake in Franklin, New Hampshire

The cyanobacteria bloom appears as green clouds on isolated shores of the lake.A cyanobacteria bloom has been observed on Webster Lake, appearing as green clouds along isolated shores. Samples collected on June 2 contained cyanobacteria (Dolichospermum) in concentrations that ranged from 50,000 cells/ml to 150,000 cells/ml. Advisories are issued when cyanobacterial cell concentrations exceed 70,000 cells/ml. As a result, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) has issued a cyanobacteria bloom advisory for those who use the waterbody for recreation. The advisory is not based on a toxin evaluation and is intended as a precautionary measure for short term exposure.

Surface blooms can rapidly change and accumulate in various locations around a waterbody. Please continue to monitor your individual shorelines for changing conditions. NHDES advises lake users to avoid contact with the water in areas experiencing elevated cyanobacteria cell conditions, also known as a bloom. NHDES also advises pet owners to keep their pets out of any waters that have a cyanobacteria bloom.

Cyanobacteria are natural components of water bodies worldwide, though blooms and surface scums may form when excess nutrients are available to the water.  Some cyanobacteria produce toxins that are stored within the cells and released upon cell death. Toxins can cause both acute and chronic health effects that range in severity.  Acute health effects include irritation of skin and mucous membranes, tingling, numbness, nausea, vomiting, seizures and diarrhea. Chronic effects may include liver and central nervous system damage. Be cautious of lake water that has a surface scum, changes colors, or appears to have green streaks or blue-green flecks aggregating along the shore.  

The cyanobacteria advisory went into effect on June 2, 2021 and will remain in effect until NHDES confirms that cell concentrations of the bloom have subsided.

Visit the NHDES Beach Program website for photos and more information about cyanobacteria.
View updates on cyanobacteria advisories.
Follow the Beaches twitter feed.

If you notice anything resembling cyanobacteria, please refrain from wading, swimming, or drinking the water. Keep all pets out of the water and contact NHDES immediately. Please call NHDES to report a cyanobacteria bloom at (603) 848-8094 or email HAB@des.nh.gov.