Blue-green algae bloom reported on Hillsborough River, health officials say

Local officials issued a health alert after a blue-green algae bloom was reported on the Hillsborough River. 

A health alert was issued Tuesday after a blue-green algae bloom was found on the Hillsborough River, local health officials said. 

The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County said harmful blue-green algal toxins were present in the Hillsborough River, north of Morris Bridge Road and west of I-75. The DOH issued the health alert in response to a water sample taken on Aug. 4. 

Health officials are saying the public should be cautious in and around this area of the Hillsborough River. 

Residents and visitors shouldn't drink, swim, wade, use personal watercraft, water ski, or boat in waters where there is a visible bloom. Hillsborough County health officials said you should wash your skin and clothing with soap and water if you have contact with algae or discolored or smelly water. 

Pet owners should also keep animals away from the water on the Hillsborough River, according to the DOH. 

Anyone who sees a bloom is asked to report it to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection by calling 855-305-3903. For more information on health effects of algal blooms, click here