Harmful algal blooms are beginning to spread through California's waterways, covering lakes and rivers with emerald scum just as Californians get ready to go swimming this summer.
The State Water Resources Control Board has warned the public to be mindful of this public safety risk. State officials say children and pets should be kept away from certain lakes and reservoirs as the sickly blooms permeate the water.
Greg Gearheart with the State Water Board says algal blooms appear like blue-green algae and are capable of producing unhealthy toxins.
Gearheart says be careful about using water, fertilizers and pesticides on your lawn and garden. And keep pets out of the water and don't allow them to drink water or eat algal scum on the shore.
Fore more information on reporting a bloom and tracking multiple blooms across the state, visit the California Harmful Algal Blooms Portal. There is also a Bloom Watch smartphone app.