RIDOH, DEM recommends avoiding contact with Lower Melville Pond due to blue-green algae

The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) are advising people to avoid contact with Lower Melville Pond in Portsmouth due to blooms of blue-green algae (or cyanobacteria ).

An advisory associated with the bloom in Upper Melville Pond (known as Thurston Gray Pond) remains in effect. Blue algae can produce toxins that can harm humans and animals.

People should be careful not to ingest water or eat fish from ponds. All recreation, including fishing, boating, and kayaking, should be avoided. Animals likely to ingest pond water are particularly exposed to algal toxins. Owners should therefore not allow animals to drink or swim in the water. The advisory will remain in effect until further notice.

Skin contact with water containing blue-green algae often causes irritation of the skin, nose, eyes and/or throat. Common health effects associated with ingesting water containing algal toxins include stomach upset, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. Rarer health effects include dizziness, headache, fever, liver damage, and nervous system damage. Young children and pets are particularly at risk for the health effects associated with algal toxins. People who have been in contact with pond water and experience these symptoms should contact their health care provider.

If you come into contact with water, rinse your skin with clean water as soon as possible and when you get home, take a shower and wash your clothes. Likewise, if your pet comes into contact with water, wash it immediately with clear water. Do not let the animal lick its fur. Call a veterinarian if your pet shows symptoms of blue-green algae poisoning, including loss of energy, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, or any unexplained illness that occurs about a day after being in contact with water. People are being warned that the toxins can linger in the water after the blue-green algae bloom is gone.

Blue-green algae blooms can also affect other bodies of water in Rhode Island. People are advised to avoid contact with bodies of water that exhibit bright green coloration in the water or on the water’s surface and/or dense floating mats of algae that form on the surface some water. The water may look like green paint, thick pea soup, or green cottage cheese.

For more information and a list of current and historical advisories, go to www.dem.ri.gov/bluegreen Please send reports of suspected blue-green algal blooms, along with photographs, if possible to DEM [email protected] .

Ryan Belmore is the editor of What’sUpNewp.
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named the best local news blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention. at the Common Good Awards. in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. As well as living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville and East Greenwich.

Belmore is currently Vice Chairman of the Fort Adams Trust Board and the Potter League For Animals Board. He previously served on the board of Lucy’s Hearth and the Newport County Arts and Culture Alliance.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a decision they made in 2021. Read more about it here – https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the -publisher-some-personal -news/

Belmore visits Newport every two weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What’sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he has called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of the Local Independent Online News Publishers (LION), the Society of Professional Journalists and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named member of the year by LION and won the Dominque Award from the Newport County Arts and Culture Alliance.
Belmore can be reached at [email protected] and 401-662-1653.

More Ryan Belmore

Comments are closed.