Algae bloom detected in Bass Lake .

September 7, 2022

The buoy to detect harmful algae blooms on Bass Lake.
– Bass Lake Property Owners Association photo

Algae bloom detected in Bass Lake .

District Health Department #10 officials said an algae bloom was detected on Bass Lake, according to a press release issued Wednesday, Sept. 7.

Bass Lake is situated in northern Oceana County and southern Mason County near Pentwater. 

“On Aug. 24, the Department of Environment Great Lakes and Energy collected samples and sent them to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services lab where results came back positive for microcystin, an algal toxin released by some types of algae in lakes or rivers,” the press release states.  

Algae blooms can form when there are high nutrient levels within bodies of water along with warm temperatures. They look like a green mat right on top of the water that smells bad and has a gelatinous texture to them,” states DHD#10 Environmental Health Director Michael Kramer.  

 “Algal toxins that are released in the algae bloom can be harmful to aquatic life, pets, and humans, so it is very important to avoid these areas,” states the press release.

 “Additional testing will take place again the week of Sept 12. Signs will be posted along the lake to notify individuals to avoid contact with the water in that area.”

Below are some steps to take when near waterways: 

  • Avoid direct contact with waterways that appear to be scummy or have a green shade to them; 
  • Do not drink untreated surface water;
  • Obey posted signage for public health advisories and/or beach closings;
  • Limit or avoid eating fish from algal bloom impacted areas.

Contact with algae blooms can cause minor illness in humans but can be fatal to pets. Therefore, it is also recommended that people keep their pets out of the water that shows any signs of algae blooms. 

 People and pets can experience the following symptoms after exposure to algae blooms: 

  • Rash, hives, or skin blisters at skin contact site; 
  • Runny eyes and/or nose, sore throat, asthma-like symptoms, or allergic reactions;
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, weakness, tingly fingers, numbness, dizziness, difficulty breathing, or even death resulting from ingesting contaminated water.

If you think you have been exposed to algae blooms, take the following precautions: 

  • Immediately remove yourself and/or your pet from the area;
  • Take a shower and thoroughly rinse off pets with clean, fresh water if they swam in an area with algae blooms to avoid potential toxic ingestion from licking. 

If you think you or your pet may have been exposed to or ingested algal toxins, seek medical treatment for yourself and/or veterinary treatment for your pet as soon as possible. 

For more information about algal blooms, visit

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