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Grand Union Canal at Little Venice dredged to remove surge in algae

Britain’s waterways have turned shades of green after huge amounts of algae caused by the heatwave clogged up canals and ponds. 

Pictures from the Grand Union canal at Little Venice in London show workmen dredging up the algae today.

Other snaps from Green Park show huge patches of algae forming on the lake in front of Buckingham Palace.

The news comes after the Environmental Agency urged swimmers to avoid four Cumbrian lakes – Windermere, Ullswater, Coniston Water and Killington Reservoir – after toxic blue-green algae was found last week. 

Scorching summer temperatures, which hit 33.3C earlier today, have helped algae grow across lakes, ponds, and canals across the country.

 

Workmen were pictured dredging the Grand Union canal at Little Venice in London earlier today to remove a build up of algae

Scorching summer temperatures, which hit 33.3C today, have helped algae grow across lakes, ponds, and canals across the country (pictured: Grand Union canal)

Scorching summer temperatures, which hit 33.3C today, have helped algae grow across lakes, ponds, and canals across the country (pictured: Grand Union canal)

Not all types of algae produce toxins, but those that do can trigger skin rashes, nausea, vomiting, stomach pains, fever and headaches in humans. 

Thick algae blooms can hurt fish and other wildlife by blocking sunlight and clogging up fish gills.

They can also consume too much oxygen as they die and decompose leading to dead zones where animals cannot survive. 

A Royal Parks Trust spokesperson confirmed the algae in the lake outside Buckingham Palace is not blue-green algae, and they have no plans to dredge it. 

The Canal River Trust, who manage the Grand Union Canal, have been contacted for comment.  

Other snaps from Green Park show huge patches of algae forming on the lake in front of Buckingham Palace

Other snaps from Green Park show huge patches of algae forming on the lake in front of Buckingham Palace

A Royal Parks Trust spokesperson confirmed the algae in the lake outside Buckingham Palace is not blue-green algae, and they have no plans to dredge it

A Royal Parks Trust spokesperson confirmed the algae in the lake outside Buckingham Palace is not blue-green algae, and they have no plans to dredge it

The toxic blue-green algae found in four Cumbrian lakes has been linked to serious illness such as liver and brain damage, according to Welsh health officials. 

Public Health Wales warns: ‘Blue-green algae are capable of producing several different toxins. People may be exposed to these toxins through contact with the skin (e.g. when swimming), through inhalation (e.g. when motor boating or water skiing), or by swallowing contaminated water. 

‘These toxins can cause skin rashes, nausea, vomiting, stomach pains, fever and headaches.

‘Occasionally they can cause more serious illness such as liver and brain damage.’

Children are at greater risk than adults of developing problems because of their comparative lower body weight.

Jim Ratcliffe from the Environment Agency said: ‘Blue Green Algae is a completely natural summertime occurrence, however it can be toxic and as such, users of these lakes must remain cautious. 

‘As well as having a negative effect on the appearance, quality and use of the water, it can also move around – you could see it one day, but it may have moved the next.’

Once the algae is confirmed as present in a body of water the agency encourage local authorities to display signs warning the public of the health risks.  

Blue-green Algae flourishes in sunlight, and four Cumbrian lakes have become infected with the deadly organism. Pictured: Blue-green Algae at Killington Reservoir

Blue-green Algae flourishes in sunlight, and four Cumbrian lakes have become infected with the deadly organism. Pictured: Blue-green Algae at Killington Reservoir



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