Blue-green algae Red Alerts for the lower Murray River – Mt Dispersion and d/s Mildura Marina to Wentworth

Blue-green algae Red Alerts for the lower Murray River – Mt Dispersion and d/s Mildura Marina to Wentworth

31 March 2021

A red alert level warning (high alert) is currently in place for the Murray River at Mount Dispersion and from downstream of Mildura Marina to Wentworth. The red alert for Murray River from Red Cliffs to Mildura Marina has been lifted. WaterNSW and Lower Murray Water will continue to monitor sites in the area and report the results as soon as they become available.

A red alert level warning indicates that people should not undertake recreational activities where they may be coming into direct contact with the water. Contact with the water may also pose a threat to livestock, and pets.

People should not eat mussels or crayfish from Red Alert warning areas. A precautionary approach should be applied to fishing during bloom events. Any fish caught should be cleaned and washed thoroughly in uncontaminated water and any internal organs disposed of before consumption. Fish fillet meals from algal bloom affected areas should be limited to 1-2 servings per week. Avoiding fishing in a bloom location is the best way to minimise risk, particularly catching and eating fish from locations with severe blooms that last extended periods of time.

Blue-green algae usually appear as green paint-like scums on the surface, near the edges, or as greenish clumps throughout the water. The water can appear to be dirty, green or discoloured and a strong musty or earthy odour may be noticed.

Potentially harmful algal blooms tend to occur when there are warm water temperatures and sunny days, low turbidity and calm water conditions where water may stratify. It is not possible to predict how long the algae will remain at high levels. Regular monitoring will continue, and the alert will be lifted as soon as the high levels of algae dissipate.

People who believe they may have been affected by blue-green algae are advised to seek medical advice.

Updates about blue-green algae blooms and red level warning areas can be obtained by visiting – http://www.waternsw.com.au/water-quality/algae.

General inquires – Dane Clarke – 0419 423 115

Media Contact – Tony Webber – 0428 613 478

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