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The Davidson County Health Department reports that cyanobacteria has been found in High Rock Lake after a complaint was investigated by the NC Department of Health and Human Services Division of Water Sciences Section and the Division of Water Resources, Department of Environmental Quality. The sample has been confirmed as the bacteria, Lyngbya wollei (photo and factsheet attached). Lyngbya wollei is a filamentous cyanobacteria that is becoming common in North Carolina waterbodies. It tends to form large nuisance growths on the lake bottom which can detach and float to the surface as thick black mats. This is the first reported incidence on Lyngbya wollei on High Rock Lake, but several other North Carolina reservoirs (e.g. Lake Gaston) are actively trying to manage Lyngbya infestations.
N.C. DHHS recommends the following steps to safeguard pets and children from harmful cyanobacterial (blue-green algal) blooms:
For more information contact the Rowan County Environmental Health Department at 704-216-8525.
Cyanobacteria FAQs (PDF)Black Mat Algae Fact Sheet (PDF)