Feb. 8, 2024 – ORLANDO – The Florida Department of Health in Orange County has issued a Health Caution for the presence of blue-green algae in Lake Minnehaha. This is in response to a water sample taken by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection on February 7, 2024. The public should exercise caution in and around Lake Minnehaha.
Blooms have the potential to produce toxins, and what triggers them to begin doing so remains poorly understood. For this reason, it is important to exercise caution, as bloom conditions are dynamic and could change at any time. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) collects algae samples from reported bloom locations for toxin analysis. Once completed, the results will be posted on the FDEP Algal Bloom Dashboard, and can also be viewed on the Protecting Florida Together website, where you can sign up to be notified of the latest conditions.
The Department of Health uses a two-tiered notification of Health Cautions and Health Alerts. For blue-green algae, a Health Caution is based on the presence of a bloom, and a Health Alert is issued on the basis of toxin detected.
Original notice follows
ORLANDO – The Florida Department of Health in Orange County has issued a health alert for the presence of harmful blue-green algal toxins in Lake Minnehaha. This is in response to a water sample taken by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection on January 31, 2024. The public should exercise caution in and around Lake Minnehaha.
Residents and visitors are advised to take the following precautions:
For updates, please visit the statewide FDEP Algal Bloom Dashboard.
Do not drink, swim, wade, use personal watercraft, water ski or boat in waters where there is a visible bloom.
Wash your skin and clothing with soap and water if you have contact with algae or discolored or smelly water.
Keep pets away from the area. Waters where there are algae blooms are not safe for animals. Pets and livestock should have a different source of water when algae blooms are present.
Do not cook or clean dishes with water contaminated by algae blooms. Boiling the water will not eliminate the toxins.
Eating fillets from healthy fish caught in freshwater lakes experiencing blooms is safe. Rinse fish fillets with tap or bottled water, throw out the guts and cook fish to the appropriate temperature.
Do not eat shellfish in waters with algae blooms.