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More algae blooms found at Lake Anna

August 18, 2021 GMT

SPOTSYLVANIA, Va. (AP) — Virginia health officials are expanding an advisory against swimming at Lake Anna after algae blooms spread to other parts of the lake.

The Virginia Department of Health collected samples from the lake earlier this month and updated the harmful algae bloom map, news outlets report. The map now shows seven areas that have no-swim advisories.

The harmful algae blooms were detected in the upper areas of the North Anna and Pamunkey branches earlier this summer and they’ve now spread to the middle and lower areas of the branches. Advisories are in place for three areas in the North Anna Branch: the upper branch or the “Sandbar,” north of Holladay Bridge, and the lower area and four locations on the Pamunkey branch.

The harmful algae can cause skin rashes and stomach illnesses. Other cyanobacteria found at the lake, including the Lake Anna State park beach area on the Pamunkey branch, were deemed to be at acceptable levels.

The advisory does not extend to the entire lake. Samples collected downstream at the Lake Anna State Park beach and the state Route 208 bridge were within safe limits, officials said.