No swimming, pets allowed at two Easthampton ponds due to algae

Health

EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Another Hampshire County pond has been closed to the public after health officials found more algae in the waters.

Signs read ‘No swimming’ along Lower Mill Pond in Easthampton Tuesday, after cyanobacteria algae was found by Massachusetts health officials. This is the same algae that was found last week which closed Nashawannuck Pond for swimming.

“It’s kind of a bummer because it would be nice to swim in local ponds rather than resort to swimming pools because I think it’s nice to get out in nature,” Jasper Cowley of Southampton said.

The Massachusetts Department of Health is advising people and animals to stay out of both Nashawannuck and Lower Mill Pond until more tests can be made.

Easthampton’s Health Department said algae can be caused by warm weather, sunlight, or stormwater runoff.

❗️ALGAE ADVISORY AT LOWER MILL POND❗️More photos sent to the MA Department of Public Health this morning of Lower Mill…

Posted by Easthampton Health Department on Monday, August 19, 2019

The City of Easthampton Board of Health advises the public to avoid swimming, fishing, kayaking, and boating.

“It’s sad because it’s kind of one of the centerpieces of Easthampton,” Victor Guarino of Easthampton said. “A lot of people bring their pets, their kids, the whole family down to the water and it would be nice if there was no algae in it. As long as people know not to go in it and everyone is safe about it.”

Contact with the algae can cause skin and eye irritation and ingesting the water could cause liver damage. If you think your pet came into contact with this algae, you should wash your pet and contact your veterinarian.

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