According to sources, Port Macquarie-Hastings Council's Development and Environmental Services has removed its health warnings from two Canterbury Rivers.
The Ashley and Hurunui rivers, which were under the health warnings have been liberated as, it has been discovered that the level of toxicity has dropped and the level is now safe. The toxicity is considered to be due to algae. The present growth of toxic algae is under control.
However, the Canterbury District Health Board has not allowed people to enter the Lake Ellesmere and the Waiau River near the Waiau town. These two lakes are still under health warnings according to the Board.
According to findings, the blue-green algae appear as dark brown or black mats attached to rocks on the riverbed and often associated with strong musty smell.
Meanwhile, the algae were even observed in parts of Hasting River last week. However, the Director of Port Macquarie-Hastings Council's Development and Environmental Services, Matt Rogers stated that the analysis of the water sample from the river concluded that the growth of cf. Oscillatoria sp is non-toxic.
He said, “There is the possibility Oscillatoria may reappear and so it is being recommended that residents and river users continue to take a precautionary approach and avoid contact with the water if any algal material is evident”.