Health alert issued for reported blue-green algae toxins in Doctors Lake

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. — The Florida Department of Health in Clay County (DOH-Clay) has issued a health alert following the detection of harmful blue-green algae toxins in Doctors Lake at Wyndegate Drive and Lawrence Road.

The alert stems from a water sample taken on June 17, and the public is advised to exercise caution in and around these areas.


Precautionary Measures:
  • Avoid Contact: Do not drink, swim, wade, use personal watercraft, or come into contact with waters showing visible blooms.
  • Hygiene: Wash skin and clothing with soap and water if exposed to algae or discolored water.
  • Pet Safety: Keep pets and livestock away from the affected water. Use alternative water sources for animals.
  • Cooking and Cleaning: Do not use contaminated water for cooking or cleaning dishes. Boiling does not eliminate toxins.
  • Fish Consumption: Eating fillets from healthy fish caught in bloom-affected freshwater lakes is safe. Rinse fillets with tap or bottled water, discard the guts, and cook thoroughly. Do not eat shellfish from affected waters.
About Blue-Green Algae:

Blue-green algae are bacteria commonly found in Florida’s freshwater environments. Blooms occur when rapid algae growth leads to the accumulation of cells that discolor the water and produce floating mats with unpleasant odors. Blooms can appear as scum, foam, or paint-like surfaces in various colors and are more frequent in summer and fall.

Health Risks:

Blue-green algae can produce toxins harmful to humans, pets, and ecosystems. Sensitive individuals, such as children, the elderly, and those immunocompromised, may be at risk even at low concentrations and should avoid exposure.

For more information on potential health effects, visit the DOH’s harmful algae blooms webpage.

Current Water Status:

For up-to-date information on Florida’s water quality and public health notifications, visit Protecting Florida Together. Subscriptions for notifications are available.

Reporting Algae Blooms:
  • Algae Blooms: Report to DEP online or call 1-855-305-3903.
  • Human Health Impacts: Report symptoms to the Florida Poison Information Center at 800-222-1222.
  • Animal Health Impacts: Contact your veterinarian if your pet becomes ill after contact with contaminated water.
  • Fish Kills: Report to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission online or at 800-636-0511.

For additional health questions or concerns about blue-green algae, contact DOH-Clay at 904-278-3784.

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