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Algal bloom off Cape Coast – Hawke’s Bay Regional Council

A bright, rust coloured algal bloom has appeared along the shoreline near Te Awanga and Haumoana.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council’s Environmental Information Team took samples on Thursday afternoon to determine if the algal bloom is toxic.

Results from Thursday afternoon’s samples are expected to be available in the coming days and will be reported on the Regional Council’s Facebook page.

Regional Council Senior Scientist Marine and Coasts Becky Shanahan says, “Algal blooms are common in Hawke’s Bay after periods of heavy rain and warm temperatures when conditions are just right for algae to grow.”

“Most algal blooms are harmless and are a food source for marine life. Only around two percent of algal species can produce toxins that can harm marine life. While they typically don’t cause issues for people, they can in rare cases.”

“Our teams will continue monitoring the bloom as the composition can naturally change over time. If results change and indicate levels of high risk for the community, Te Whatu Ora will be notified, and further guidance will be provided.”

As a precaution, the public is advised not to swim or harvest shellfish where the algal bloom is present.

The bloom may shift around the bay as long as conditions remain favourable.

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