Toxic algae forces closure of Ellison Dog Park pond area


PENFIELD, N.Y. (WROC) — Officials from the Monroe County Parks Department say the pond area of Ellison Dog Park is closed while they investigate the presence of blue-green algae blooms.

Officials say the pond area is closed until further notice. Samples were collected by the Department of Environmental Services Tuesday morning for analysis and came back positive for the toxic algae.

Blue-green algae is typically found in shallow, still water. It contains a toxin that can make people and animals sick.

Larry Staub is the Monroe County parks director. He said symptoms can surface in as little as 15 minutes.

“If you feel that you ever are in contact with blue-green algae you should wash the affected area immediately. If you develop any symptoms you should see a medical professional whether that’s your physician or a veterinarian,” Staub said.

Symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, and disorientation.

The pond area of the dog park will remain closed until all traces of the toxins are gone. The small and large dog areas of the dog park are still open.

Monday, News 8 reported that Irondequoit Bay is one of 13 new locations to have toxic algae blooms. Water from the Irondequoit Creek in Ellison Park flows into the Irondequoit Bay.

The toxic algae has been discovered on 39 lakes in New York State.

“We’ve been coming here for about six years,” said Alison Grenert. “In the beginning of the summer he [pet] drank a lot of the pond water and became violently ill. throwing up, he doesn’t drink the water anymore. he smells and realizes he doesn’t want to drink it.”

Grenert shared with us this picture from July of last year in the same area at Ellison Park:

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