POINSETT COUNTY, Ark. (WREG) — An algal bloom that can be harmful for animals and humans has been detected in a Lake Hogue in Poinsett County, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said this week.

A harmful algal bloom advisory was issued on September 19 by the state’s Department of Energy and Environment Division of Environmental Quality.

The department says exposure to harmful algal blooms can result in illness or death. The affected area may move throughout the water column or from shore to shore depending on the time of day or wind action.

The Game and Fish Commission said the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality is monitoring the issue and will notify them when the harmful algal bloom is no longer present.

Visitors are being asked to do the following:

  • Avoid areas of algae accumulation, especially for pets and small children.
  • Avoid direct contact with water, and wash with clean water after any contact.
  • Do not let people or pets eat dried algae or drink contaminated water.
  • Swimming, wading, skiing. and jet skiing are discouraged near-visible blooms
  • Clean fish well with potable water and eat fillet portions only.

The Game and Fish Commission said it is safe to boat and fish in the lake but inhaling the spray may affect some individuals.

You can learn more about harmful algal blooms and find safety tips here.

If you suspect there is a harmful algal bloom, avoid contact with the water and report it to the DEQ at habs@adeq.state.ar.us or call 501-682-0744.