Nine E. coli, one microsystin warnings issued for August 24-30

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Source: Iowa Department of Natural Resources

From about Memorial Day through Labor Day, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) conducts weekly monitoring of bacterial pollution in Iowa’s 39 state park beaches.

The DNR analyzes water samples from the beaches for certain one-celled microorganisms, known as indicator bacteria, that are visible only under a microscope. High levels of E. coli, a common indicator bacteria, indicate feces is in the water, most commonly in Iowa from livestock sources.

These indicator bacteria are commonly used by state environmental agencies and by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to determine the suitability of beaches for swimming-type uses.

Microcystin, a toxin produced by harmful blue-green algae blooms, has also been detected in Iowa’s water bodies.

Due to health risks, when microcystin or E.coli levels exceed certain standards/thresholds, the DNR posts swim advisories telling beach-goers to stay out of the water.

The Iowa DNR and the Iowa Environmental Council track these weekly beach monitoring  reports and swim advisories and compare advisory trends from year to year.  To review recent trend data, visit the Iowa DNR website.

Beach advisories were issued for nine Iowa beaches for E. coli contamination for the week of Aug. 24-30. Beaches with E. coli-related warnings or advisories included:

  • Backbone Beach in Dundee
  • Beed’s Lake Beach in Hampton
  • Denison Beach in Lake View
  • Emerson Bay Beach in Milford
  • Lake Macbride Beach in Solon
  • Lower Pine Lake Beach in Eldora
  • McIntosh Woods Beach in Ventura
  • Prairie Rose Beach in Harlan
  • Rock Creek Beach in Kellogg

One beach advisory was issued for microcystin-related warnings or advisories for the week of Aug. 24-30. The beach with a microcystin-related warning or advisory was:

  • Viking Lake Beach in Stanton
Source: Iowa Environmental Council
Source: Iowa Environmental Council

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