Utah Department of Agriculture and Food

Cyanotoxin Identification

How Do I Know if I Have A Toxic Bloom?

 

You can’t know for certain unless you have the water tested.  However, look for these differences between cyanobacteria and non-toxic green algae:

 

  • Cyanobacteria looks like pea soup, an oil slick, or like someone placed dye in the water. Cyanobacteria is potentially toxic under the right conditions (See right).

 

  • Filamentous (non-toxic) green algae often looks like a mass of green hair on the water (see below).

 

Links To Other Identification Resources

Field Guide to Algae (from Kentucky)

 

 

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