Concentration of algae in the Canoe area of Shuswap Lake is not large enough to be considered a bloom. -Image credit: Photo contributed Reports of algae in the Canoe area of Shuswap Lake are not large enough to be considered a bloom and are currently under investigation. -Image credit: Photo contributed

Algae, pollen, and large debris in Shuswap Lake

Biologists are on the lake taking samples of the yet-to-be-determined algae for investigation.

“Biologists are on the lake today collecting samples of a yet-to-be-identified algae that is present in low levels near Canoe,” said Erin Vieira, program manager for the Shuswap Watershed Council, a watershed-based partnership that enhances water quality and safe recreation in the Shuswap. “They have

ruled out the possibility that it is Ochromonas algae, also known as Golden Brown algae, which is what bloomed in the lake in 2010,” Vieira said.

The algae samples will be sent to a lab for identification.

The levels aren’t substantial enough to be deemed a ‘bloom’ at this point.

There are also large swaths of pine pollen in the water, both floating on the surface and submerged in the water column, which can bear a resemblance to algae.

“There is also plenty of large debris in the lake, ranging from logs, firewood and plywood due to high water levels catching debris off shorelines,” Vieira said. Anybody venturing onto the lake is urged to be very cautious, watch for debris, and not create wake near shorelines to avoid causing damage.”

More information will be provided as it becomes available.