Sharing the shoreline Two horseback riders shared a moment with a UVic Vikes men’s pair during the Elk Lake Spring Regatta on Sunday. The two-day event offered numerous shoreline views from around the lake

Algae bloom warning lifted at Elk Lake; two more advisories ongoing in Saanich

It’s safe to swim at Elk/Beaver Lake Regional Park, following the CRD’s lift on its two-and-a-half month blue-green algae advisory.

It’s safe to swim at Elk/Beaver Lake Regional Park, following the CRD’s lift on its two-and-a-half month blue-green algae advisory.

The district announced the end of the advisory on Friday  after samples collected from the Beaver, Eagle and Hamsterly Beaches indicated a “below detection limit” result for microcystins, a class of toxins produced by certain freshwater cyanobacteria.

The temporary advisory was issued on Dec. 23 when the district first noticed a bloom of algae on the lake. Algae blooms are unpredictable, and ingesting water containing blue-green algae is known to cause a range of symptoms, including headaches and abdominal pain in humans, and can lead to lethal liver damage in dogs.

“The blue-green algae bloom is pretty obvious – it’s an iridescent blue-green sheen on the surface of the water, and so it’s quite visible and it gets everyone’s attention,” said Glenn Harris, senior manager of the environmental protection division with the CRD.

“Very conservatively, we assumed that this algae was producing potential toxins in the water. Signs went up, and as long as we could see the bloom at some point around the lake, we just made the assumption that it was present in toxins.”

Thetis Lake had blue-green algae earlier this year and the mild winter lent to the Elk Lake bloom lasting a bit longer than usual.

The Vancouver Island Health Authority currently has advisories posted for elevated bacteria concentrations in Cadboro Bay and Cordova Bay.

They are believed to be related to stormwater discharges and some creek overflows, Harris said.

“You get these heavy rains that overflow the stormwater pipes and you get elevated fecal concentrations, enough to exceed the limits.”

Sightings of lake algae can be reported to the CRD at or by phone at 250-478-3344.




Just Posted

Saanich council will consider tax reduction scenarios for 2020 budget

Coun. Rebecca Mersereau however warns of cutting additional funding for capital expenditures

Jurors talk about trial of U.S. man convicted in 1987 murders of Saanich couple

Three jurors offer a window into deliberations during the trial

West Shore RCMP arrest man in stolen vehicle, seize handgun

Vehicle was reported stolen from Duncan on July 18

Victoria Police issue warning after man left dangling from raised Johnson Street Bridge

A man bypassed safety measures and became stranded as the bridge lifted

Premier John Horgan hints at daylight saving changes after record-breaking survey response

B.C.’s largest public consultation saw more than 220,000 residents respond to time change survey

VIDEO: Missing teens named as suspects in three northern B.C. killings

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky are wanted in the deaths of Lucas Fowler, Chynna Deese, unknown man

Coroner investigating after body recovered from Okanagan Lake

Penticton fire department assisted the RCMP with the recovery of a body Saturday

Overdoses overwhelming in B.C. Interior

Part two: Who’s affected by the current opioid crisis

Kelowna cab driver charged with sexual assault

RCMP received a report May 28 alleging a taxi passenger had been sexually assaulted by a cab driver

Tubing world record broken on Vancouver Island

But record for length of tubes linked together still has to be confirmed

The Beaverton’s sharp satire thrives in polarized political climate

Canadian TV series’ third season to air Tuesday on CTV after “The Amazing Race Canada”

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Family of missing B.C. senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

Most Read