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Angus & The Mearns

Dangerous algae discovered at Keptie Pond

July 27 2015

Dangerous algae has appeared at an Angus beauty spot. High concentrations of blue algae have been found at Keptie Pond in Arbroath. Notices have been put up at the side to warn people to keep their pets to stay out of the water. An Angus Council spokesman said: “Recent sampling has identified high levels of blue-green algae and until the all clear is given we are asking visitors to avoid contact with the water and keep their pets away. “Contact can cause harmful effects such as rashes, vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle or joint pain and can be severe. “When in high concentrations in the water this naturally occurring algae can multiply to cause algal blooms which may then release toxins. “The behaviour of algae is erratic and the levels of its toxicity can fluctuate. It can appear one day, be dispersed by the wind and re-accumulate at any time.” Anyone with concerns is asked to contact the council’s ACCESSLine on 08452 777 778.

Motoring news

Audi’s new Q cars

April 12 2017

Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...

Dundee

Stay out of the water blue-green algae at Clatto Country Park prompts warning

July 13 2011

Visitors to Clatto Country Park on the outskirts of Dundee have been warned not to go into the water. Regular sampling of the former supply reservoir has found high levels of blue-green algae and, until the all clear is given, all water sports activity has been suspended. The naturally-occurring algae has been found in high concentrations in the water, which can multiply to cause algal blooms or scum which may then release toxins. These can cause stomach upsets and more serious health effects. Contact with algal scum or water close to it has also been known to cause skin problems. Notices have been posted at the park to advise visitors that water activities are temporarily suspended but all other activities at Clatto are continuing as normal. A spokesman for Dundee City Council said, "The notices have been posted with the advice that people and their pets should avoid contact with the water in the meantime."

Dundee

Poisonous algae found at Clatto Reservoir

June 18 2015

Visitors to Clatto Reservoir in Dundee have been told to avoid contact with the water as it has been infected by dangerous bacteria for the third time in 12 months. Recent sampling has identified high levels of blue-green algae and until the all clear is given people are being asked to avoid contact with the water and keep their pets away. When in high concentrations in the water this naturally occurring algae can multiply to cause algal blooms which may then release toxins. The behaviour of algae is erratic and the levels of its toxicity can fluctuate. It can appear one day, be dispersed by the wind and re-accumulate at any time. Contact with algal scum or water close to it can cause skin rashes. More serious health effects can include stomach upsets, eye irritations and pain in muscles and joints. These symptoms are usually mild, but in some cases can be severe. If anyone has been in contact with the water and experiences health problems they should contact their GP or NHS 24 on 111 Notices have been posted at the reservoir. It is the third time in a year that the algae has infected Clatto Reservoir. Warnings were issued last June and then again in April. Dundee City Council environment convener councillor Craig Melville said: "Due to the high concentrations of blue green algae, parents are advised to be vigilant with their children and dog owners should prevent their dogs from drinking the water. "Our officers will continue to monitor the quality of the water and notices will be removed when the hazard has passed." Dundee City Council's environment department can provide further information on the algae on 433710.

Dundee

Owner fears dog was poisoned by algae near Clatto Reservoir

July 4 2015

An area of water near Clatto Reservoir has been fenced off, amid claims a dog was poisoned by dangerous algae. Dundee City Council received a complaint from a member of the public who said her pet had become ill and a barrier was put up around the field drain as a precaution. The claim comes shortly after warning signs were put up at Clatto Reservoir, which is popular with dog walkers, to warn of a potentially dangerous blue-green algae infestation in the water. Environment convener Craig Melville said: “From time to time, especially in summer, Clatto has problems with algae. This is unfortunate but the situation is monitored and dealt with.” NHS Tayside issued a warning to dog walkers and those involved in water sports and included Clatto as a possible problem area. Dr Jackie Hyland, consultant in public health medicine at NHS Tayside, said people who accidentally swallow affected water can suffer from complaints such as skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea or pains in muscles and joints. She added: “The risk to small animals like dogs is significant over the summer months, as they tend to drink more water in the heat and may eat shoreline algal crusts. “Dog owners should keep an eye on their pets, especially if they come into contact with water which could be affected. “The public should be reassured that public water supplies are always treated to prevent any harmful effects to health due to blue-green algae.” A council spokesman said: “Following concerns from a member of the public, we have cordoned off the area as a precautionary measure and have contacted NHS Tayside.” Algae has been a recurring problem at Clatto Reservoir for several years but the problem appears to be on the increase. Recent sampling has identified high levels of blue-green algae, while dangerous bacteria has been identified for the third time in 12 months. A number of sites in and around Dundee are regularly monitored, Backwater, Den of Ogil, Glenogil and Lintrathen among them.

Angus & The Mearns

Angus Council approves £45,000 funding to tackle Keptie Pond algae

May 16 2011

A £45,000 borehole project has been approved in an effort to rid Arbroath's Keptie Pond of unsightly summer algae. Not so long ago a local leisure gem, recent years have seen the arrival of warm weather also herald a covering on unsightly slime on the surface of the former boating pond. Temporary solutions to the problem have included teams of workmen scooping out tonnes of algae during the summer months, but councillors have been keen to pursue a more permanent fix. A report detailing a number of options to tackle the problem was initially presented to elected members around 18 months ago and the latest meeting of the full Angus Council has selected a scheme to pump five figures from the town Common Good into the technical solution. The borehole will be tapped into existing ground water and, using pumping equipment, the authority will be able to keep the pond topped up to avoid the low water levels which contribute to the algal growth. Among the options ruled out was a proposal to maintain the status quo and simply clear up the algae at an estimated cost of £8000 a year. But the borehole solution will not be in place in time to avoid the growth of algal blooms this summer, and council neighbourhood services director Ron Ashton admitted the chosen option will not completely rid the pond of the slime. "Although topping up the water levels will not fully remove the problem, it is believed that this procedure should greatly reduce the problem down to a manageable level and therefore form a sustainable long-term solution." Neighbourhood services convener and Arbroath councillor Jim Millar led local support for the long-awaited step forward. "The algae is not dangerous, but it is unsightly," he said. "This represents a real opportunity to resolve the issues that have beset the pond for a number of years." Arbroath independent Bob Spink said, "I have been heavily involved in this issue since it started and I am also pleased to see this coming forward. "I think this is a good instance of the councillors working together and discussing things in a proper manner to bring something forward for the benefit of everybody."

Perth & Kinross

Water hazard warning across Dundee, Angus and Perth and Kinross.

April 7 2017

The public have been warned of the dangers of blooms of potentially hazardous blue-green algae in waterways across Dundee, Angus and Perth and Kinross. Asking people to be on the lookout for the hazard,  Dr Jackie Hyland, consultant in public health medicine for NHS Tayside, said: “We routinely monitor levels of blue-green algae over the warmer months because of the potential health risk to people and to animals. “Canoeists, wind surfers and swimmers who come into contact with the algal scum or who accidentally swallow affected water can suffer from complaints such as skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, or pains in muscles and joints. "These symptoms are usually mild, but in some cases, can be severe. “The risk to small animals like dogs is significant over the summer months as they tend to drink more water in the heat and may eat shoreline algal crusts.  Dog owners should keep an eye on their pets, especially if they come into contact with water which could be affected. “The public should be reassured that public water supplies are always treated to prevent any harmful effects to health due to blue-green algae.” Blue-green algae are tiny organisms which develop naturally in lochs, ponds, reservoirs, rivers and in the sea. They are a common seasonal occurrence and waters which have been affected by agricultural, domestic or industrial discharges are most at risk of developing the algae. The algae can multiply during the summer months and discolour the water which then appears green, blue-green or greenish brown and, occasionally, they clump together to form a scum on the surface of the water. At the shoreline, algal crusts may appear brown to almost black in colour. The Tayside water courses which are being monitored for blue-green algal blooms this summer are the reservoirs at Backwater, Clatto, Den of Ogil, Glenogil, Lintrathen, and Monikie as well as Forfar Loch, Loch Lee, Loch Leven and Loch Turret, Lower Stobsmuir Pond. Where monitoring reveals higher than acceptable levels of algal bloom, warning notices will be posted at the affected waterways. Anyone who finds a loch, pond or river which they suspect is affected by blue-green algae and which is not displaying a warning sign, should contact their local environmental health service — Angus (03452 777778), Dundee (01382 433710) and Perth and Kinross (01738 476476).

Outdoors

NHS Tayside warns area about blue-green algae hazard

June 2 2011

NHS Tayside has warned people in Dundee, Angus and Perth and Kinross to be on the lookout for blooms of potentially hazardous blue-green algae in the region's waterways. Blue-green algae is a common seasonal occurrence and waters that have been affected by agricultural, domestic or industrial discharges are most at risk. People and animals can be affected as a result of direct contact with water affected by blue-green algae and NHS Tayside is advising the public especially people participating in water sports, anglers and dog owners to be alert to the blooms. Dr Julie Cavanagh, consultant in public health medicine for NHS Tayside said, "Canoeists, wind surfers and swimmers who come into contact with the algal scum or who accidentally swallow affected water can suffer from complaints such as skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, or pains in muscles and joints." She added, "Dog owners should keep an eye on their pets especially if they come into contact with water which could be affected. "The public should be reassured that public water supplies are always treated to prevent any harmful effects to health due to blue-green algae." Initial monitoring has already identified blue-green algal blooms in some of the area's watercourses this year. The Tayside water courses that are being monitored for blue-green algal blooms this summer are the reservoirs at Backwater, Clatto, Den of Ogil, Glenogil, Lintrathen, and Monikie and Forfar Loch, Loch Lee, Rescobie Loch and Loch Turret. Loch Leven has permanent notices displayed advising the public about the appearance and risks of algal blooms. Where monitoring reveals higher than acceptable levels of algal bloom, warning notices will be posted. Anyone who finds a loch, pond or river they suspect is affected by blue-green algae and which is not displaying a warning sign should contact their local environmental health service.

Angus & The Mearns

Blue-green algae warning for lovers of outdoors

April 16 2015

NHS Tayside has issued a warning that potentially deadly bacteria could strike local waterways. With Easter holidays still ongoing, the health board has released an alert that hazardous blue-green algae could appear in the city’s most popular sunspots. The bacteria, which can kill dogs and cause “severe” symptoms in humans, emerged at popular beauty spot Clatto Reservoir last June. Dr Jackie Hyland, consultant in public health medicine for NHS Tayside, said: “We routinely monitor levels of blue-green algae over the warmer months because of the potential health risk to people and to animals. “Canoeists, wind surfers and swimmers who come into contact with the algal scum or who accidentally swallow affected water can suffer from complaints such as skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, or pains in muscles and joints. “These symptoms are usually mild, but in some cases, can be severe. “The risk to small animals like dogs is significant over the summer months as they tend to drink more water in the heat and may eat shoreline algal crusts. “Dog owners should keep an eye on their pets, especially if they come into contact with water which could be affected. “The public should be reassured that public water supplies are always treated to prevent any harmful effects to health due to blue-green algae.” Blue-green algae are tiny organisms which develop naturally in lochs, ponds, reservoirs, rivers and in the sea. “They are a common seasonal occurrence and waters which have been affected by agricultural, domestic or industrial discharges are most at risk of developing the algae. The algae can multiply during the summer and discolour the water which then appears green, blue-green or greenish brown and, occasionally, they clump together to form a scum on the surface of the water. At the shoreline, algal crusts may appear brown to almost black. The algae have been a recurring problem at Clatto Reservoir for several years. The site used to attract more than 95,000 visitors annually and had a thriving watersports scene, but now receives fewer than 35,000 people a year. NHS Tayside confirmed that a number of sites across Courier Country are being monitored for the algal blooms. Areas under scrutiny include Backwater, Clatto, Den of Ogil, Glenogil and Lintrathen.

Fife

Algae warning for Fifers

June 7 2016

NHS Fife has warned people to be on the lookout for potentially hazardous blue-green algae in waterways as summer arrives. Blue-green algae are tiny organisms which develop naturally in lochs, ponds, reservoirs, rivers and in the sea. They are a common seasonal occurrence and waters which have been hit by agricultural, domestic or industrial discharges are most at risk of developing the algae. In still waters, the algae can multiply during the summer to such an extent that they discolour the water making it appear green, blue-green or greenish brown. Shoreline mats of blue-green algae may appear and are usually coloured brown to black. Sometimes a scum may form on the surface of the water, appearing in different places at different times, but most commonly found near the shoreline. People and animals can both be affected as a result of direct contact with water affected by blue-green algae and NHS Fife is advising the public, especially people undertaking water sports, anglers and dog owners, to be alert to the blooms as temperatures rise. NHS Fife director of public health Dr Margaret Hannah said: “Canoeists, wind surfers and swimmers who come into contact with the algal scum or who accidentally swallow affected water can suffer from complaints such as skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, or pains in muscles and joints. “These symptoms are usually mild, but in some cases, can be severe and so you should contact your GP if these develop. “The risk to small animals like dogs is significant over the summer months as they tend to drink more water in the heat and may eat shoreline algal crusts. “Dog owners should keep an eye on their pets, especially if they come into contact with water which could be affected. “Fish caught in waters affected by blue-green algae should not be eaten and should not be fed to pets.” Public water supplies are monitored and treated to prevent harmful effects to health due to the algae. Where monitoring reveals higher than acceptable levels of algal bloom, warning notices will be posted at the affected waterways. Anyone who finds a loch, pond or river which they suspect is affected by blue-green algae and which is not displaying a warning sign, should contact their local environmental health service. For further information or to report blue-green algae visit www.fifedirect.org.uk or phone Fife Council on 03451 550022.   Problem spots The Fife watercourses which are being monitored for blue-green algal blooms this summer are: Stenhouse reservoir, Cowdenbeath community woodland ponds, Clatto reservoir, Craigtoun Park ponds, Tayport common pond, Tarvit pond, Peppermill dam, Keir dam, Roscobie reservoir, Belleknowes pond, Raith lake, Beveridge Park, Jamphlars pond, Glenrothes Park pond, Coull reservoir and Stenton pond in Glenrothes, Kinghorn loch, Town loch, Loch Ore, Loch Gelly, Loch Fitty, Lindores loch, Black loch Newburgh, Birnie and Gaddon lochs, Golden loch, Kilconquhar loch, Newton Farm loch in Wormit, Moor loch, Black Loch near Dunfermline, Tollie Hill loch, Otterston loch, Dunearn loch, Silverbarton Hill and Camilla loch.

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