Wainscott Pond: Season’s First Blue-Green Algae Bloom

Aerial view of Wainscott Pond EH Star Doug Kuntz
Wainscott Pond PhotoL Doug Kuntz EH Star

The season’s first toxic algal bloom in a South Fork body of water has been detected in Wainscott Pond, the County Department of Health Services announced Monday.

“Due to these findings, health officials ask residents not to use or recreate in these waters and keep their children and pets away from the area,” the department said in a statement.

Stony Brook University performed the analysis. The blue-green algae, which are naturally present in lakes and ponds here, have risen to concerning levels, with “floating scums on the surface of the water” that give it a “paint-like appearance,” the county said.

If someone comes into contact with the water, officials advise rinsing the skin immediately and seeking medical attention if symptoms occur, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, irritation of the skin, eyes, or throat, or allergic reactions or breathing difficulties.

Residents have been encouraged to contact the Department of Health Services if a toxic blue-green algal bloom is suspected in a pond or lake where swimming is permitted. The phone number is 631-852-5760; the email address is scdhsweb@suffolkcountyny.gov.

Christine Sampson – The East Hampton Star

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