Toxic algae has been found at the Silverstream monitoring site.
It grows on submerged river stones, presenting with a shiny brown/dark green to violet coating. It can also become unstable and detach, floating to the surface forming small brown/black mats at the water’s edge.
It is important to keep an eye on babies and toddlers who may put objects in their mouths. Seek emergency medical attention immediately if anyone in your group swallows toxic algae.
Caution should also be taken when exercising dogs by rivers as they are strongly attracted to the musty smell of drying mats and will eat them where they can, which could be fatal.
Given the rapid growth of toxic algae and its potential change in coverage between weekly monitoring points people are also urged to know what it looks like.
Check out the Greater Wellington Region Facebook page for images and more information about toxic algae.