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Utah Lake Algal Bloom Monitoring 2020

Danger Advisory

  • Waterbody closed
  • Keep out of the water

Warning Advisory

  • Do not swim or water ski in this area.
  • Avoid areas of algae scum when boating.
  • Keep animals away.
  • Do not ingest the water.
  • Clean fish well and discard guts.

Due to state budget cuts, the harmful algal bloom program is being funded by EPA through a one-time grant. This limits DWQ’s monitoring to 18 priority waterbodies in Utah.

Utah County Alerts

To sign up for updates go to alerts.utahcounty.gov and create an account. Select contact methods. Create a profile, select location. Choose alert subscription “Utah Lake” under “Utah County Alerts.”

Report a Bloom

24-Hour DEQ Environment Incidents Line: (801) 536-4123

Call Utah Poison Control Center

If you believe you or your pet have been exposed to a harmful algal bloom, call (800) 222-1222.

Update September 17, 2020

Utah County Health Department has issued a Danger Advisory for the State Park Marina. The marina remains open for boat traffic to access Utah Lake but water recreation within the marina should be avoided.

On September 10, 2020, the DWQ HABs monitoring team visited Utah Lake. The monitoring team observed a harmful algal bloom at Lincoln Marina, the State Park Marina, Provo Bay, American Fork Marina and the open water. Cyanotoxin and toxigenic cyanobacteria cell count densities samples were taken.

Results delivered from Phycotech on 09/16/2020 show the presence of high toxigenic cell count densities in some areas. Cyanotoxin results are still pending from UDAF Lab.
At the State Park Marina, toxigenic cyanobacteria cell count densities were over 7 times the DWQ/DOH Recreational Health Threshold for a danger advisory of 10,000,000 cells/mL. Please see the table below for additional results across the lake.

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Utah Lake State Park, September 10, 2020

Utah Lake State Park, September 10, 2020

Utah Lake State Park, September 10, 2020

Utah Lake State Park, September 10, 2020

Update September 3, 2020

On August 31, 2020, the DWQ HABs monitoring team visited Utah Lake. The monitoring team observed a harmful algal bloom at American Fork Marina, Lindon Marina, Lincoln Marina, and the open water. Cyanotoxin and toxigenic cyanobacteria cell count densities samples were taken. Results delivered from Phycotech on September 2, 2020, show the presence of high toxigenic cell count densities in some areas with Lindon Marina, American Fork Marina, and Lincoln Marina all above the DWQ/DOH Recreational Health Threshold for an advisory.

Please see the table below for additional results across the lake.

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Utah Lake American Fork Marina Closeup,

Utah Lake American Fork Marina Closeup, August 31, 2020

Utah Lake Lincoln Marina Closeup

Utah Lake Lincoln Marina Closeup, August 31, 2020

Utah Lake Lindon Marina Closeup.

Utah Lake Lindon Marina Closeup. August 31, 2020

Utah Lake Lincoln Marina Landscape.

Utah Lake Lincoln Marina Landscape. August 31, 2020

Update August 27, 2020

Utah County Health Department has issued a Danger Advisory for Lincoln Marina. The marina remains open for boat traffic to access Utah Lake but water recreation within the marina should be avoided.

On August 24, 2020, the DWQ HABs monitoring team visited Utah Lake. The monitoring team observed a harmful algal bloom at American Fork Marina, Lindon Marina, Lincoln Marina, and the open water. Cyanotoxin and toxigenic cyanobacteria cell count densities samples were taken.

Results delivered from Phycotech on August 27, 2020, show the presence of high toxigenic cell count densities in some areas. Cyanotoxin results are still pending from UDAF Lab.

At Lincoln Marina, toxigenic cyanobacteria cell count densities were nearly 5 times the DWQ/DOH Recreational Health Threshold for a danger advisory of 10,000,000 cells/mL. Please see the table below for additional results across the lake.

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Utah Lake Open Water

Utah Lake Open Water
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Lincoln Marina

Lincoln Marina
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Lindon Marina Closeup

Lindon Marina Closeup
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Sample Dates: August 7 & 10, 2020
Toxin levels shown in micrograms per liter (µg/L); toxigenic cell concentration cells/ml
(E) = enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA);
(L)= liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LCMS)
Sample Date Sample Site Sample Type Toxigenic Cell Concentration Microcystin Anatoxin-a Cylindrospermopsin
September 10, 2020 State Park Marina (near Jetty) Surface 23,760,915 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 State Park Marina (near Jetty) Composite 2,597,135 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 State Park Marina Boat Ramp Surface 72,646,039 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 State Park Marina Boat Ramp Composite 638,304 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 Provo Bay Composite 1,478,187 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 Lincoln Beach Surface 10,160,669 Pending Not tested Not tested
September 10, 2020 Lincoln Beach Composite 742,930 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 Lindon Marina Water Column 209,412.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 American Fork Marina Water Column 427,900.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 Lincoln Marina Surface 519,025.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 Lincoln Marina Water Column 40,357.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 1 mile SE of Bird Island Water Column 34,802.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 1 mile W of Provo Boat Harbor Water Column 23,746.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 31, 2020 2 miles W of Vineyard Water Column 51,446.00 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Lincoln Marina Surface 47,558,340 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Lincoln Marina Water Column 3,413,223 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 1 mile SE of Bird Island Water Column 90,680 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Open Water South of Provo Water Column 1,823,631 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Open Water South of Provo Water Column 1,756,227 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 1 mile W of Provo Boat Harbor Water Column 263,878 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Open Water Sout of Vineyard Water Column 145,981 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 Lindon Marina Water Column 291 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 24, 2020 American Fork Marina Water Column 295 Pending Not tested Not tested
August 7, 2020 Jordan River Narrows Water column 35,864 0.31 (E) Not tested Not tested
August 7, 2020 American Fork Marina Surface 138,107,378 48.1 (E) Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open water near Lindon Marina Water column 6,582 0.44(E) Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open water One mile West of Provo Harbor Water column 767,301 0.23(E) Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open Water, Near Provo Buoy Water column 19,768 Not tested Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open Water, One mile SW of Bird Island Water column 10,525 Not tested Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Goshen Bay Water column 80,795 0.51 (E) Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Lincoln Marina Surface 3,541,717 123 (E) Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Lincoln Marina Water column 507,426 Not tested Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open water, three miles WNW Lincoln Beach Water column 16,007 Not tested Not tested Not tested
August 10, 2020 Open water, two miles W of Saratoga Springs Water column 2,443 Not tested Not tested Not tested

Update August 19, 2020

Utah Lake was sampled on 8/7&10/2020. Notable results are from the Open Waters of Utah Lake. This bloom is quite distinct and heavily dominated by Planktothrix. The toxigenic cell concentration exceeds the recommended Warning advisory by a factor >7. The Utah County Health Department is issuing a Warning advisory for the open water of Utah Lake and posting signage at Utah Lake State Park.

American Fork marina is currently under a Warning advisory. However, recent toxigenic cell counts exceed the recommended Danger advisory by a factor of 14. The Utah County Health Department is issuing a Danger Advisory for American Fork marina. The marina remains open for boat traffic to access Utah Lake, but water recreation within the marina should be avoided.


Update August 14, 2020

  • American Fork Marina August 7 toxin results: 48.1 ug/L microcystin (surface)
  • Open Water August 10 toxin results
    • Outside Lindon marina: 0.44 ug/L microcystin (depth-integrated composite)
    • Provo WQ Buoy: 0.23 ug/L microcystin (depth-integrated composite)
    • Goshen Bay: 0.51 ug/L microcystin (depth-integrated composite)
  • Lincoln Marina August 10 toxin results: 123 ug/L microcystin (surface)

Update July 31, 2020

green harmful algal bloom scum in Utah Lake waterDivision of Water Quality (DWQ) monitoring crews collected samples at a variety of Utah Lake locations on July 14, 2020, and July 20, 2020. Toxin test results showed microcystin levels exceeding the recreational health-based thresholds in surface and water column samples at Lincoln Marina/Lincoln Beach and in surface samples at the beach inside Lindon Marina.

DWQ monitoring crews observed blooms throughout the lake and noted that the blooms increased in magnitude between July 14, 2020, and July 20, 2020. Blooms resembled grass clippings and spilled paint, with isolated clumps observed in the water column and the water surface.

DWQ is using two different toxin testing methods this season: enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LCMS). The tables below note the method used for each sample, denoted by (E) for ELISA and (L) for LCMS.

The Warning Advisory for Lincoln Marina, Lindon Marina, and American Fork Marina remains in place.

A Warning Advisory indicates a moderate relative probability of acute health risk, toxigenic cyanobacteria cell densities between 100,000 and 10,000,000 cells per milliliter (cells/mL), microcystin levels between 8 and 2,000 micrograms per liter (µg/L), cylindrospermopsin levels greater than 15µg/L, or anatoxin-a levels from 15 µg/L to 90 µg/L.

Sample Date: July 20, 2020
Toxin levels shown in micrograms per liter (µg/L)
Sample Site Sample Type Microcystin Anatoxin-a Cylindrospermopsin Nodularin
Jordan River Narrows Water column 0.2 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Entrance of American Fork Marina Water column 0.66 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lindon Marina Surface 23.3 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lindon Marina Water column 1.64 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Open Water, Two miles west of Vineyard Water column 0.29 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Open Water, Two miles west of Vineyard Water column <0.5 µg/L (L) <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L
Open Water, One mile west of Provo Harbor Water column 0.58 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Marina Surface 464 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Beach Surface 93.2 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Beach Water column 22.9 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Sample Date: July 14, 2020
Toxin levels shown in micrograms per liter (µg/L)
Sample Site Sample Type Microcystin Anatoxin-a Cylindrospermopsin Nodularin
Open water outside American Fork Marina Water column 1.22 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Open water outside American Fork Marina Water column 0.89 µg/L (L) <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L
Lindon Marina Water column <1.50 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Middle Provo Bay Water column <1.50 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
One mile southeast of Bird Island Water column 0.33 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Marina Surface 180 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Marina Surface 193 µg/L (L) <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L <0.5 µg/L
Lincoln Marina Water column 79.4 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
Lincoln Beach Water column 2.14 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested
West of Lincoln Beach Water column 0.21 µg/L (E) Not tested Not tested Not tested

Update July 19, 2020

The Utah County Health Department (UCHD) issued a Warning Advisory on July 19, 2020, for Lincoln Marina after toxin test results from samples collected by the Division of Water Quality (DWQ) on July 14, 2020, showed microcystin levels exceeding the recreational health-based threshold for a Warning Advisory. Microcystin concentrations were 193.0 micrograms per liter (µg/L). The advisory threshold is 8.0 µg/L.

The DWQ monitoring crew will return to Utah Lake today to conduct follow-up sampling.

A Warning Advisory indicates a moderate relative probability of acute health risk, toxigenic cyanobacteria cell densities between 100,000 and 10,000,000 cells per milliliter (cells/mL), microcystin levels between 8 and 2,000 micrograms per liter (µg/L), cylindrospermopsin levels greater than 15µg/L, or anatoxin-a levels from 15 µg/L to 90 µg/L.

  • Sample date: July 14, 2020
  • Sample type: Surface sample
  • Microcystin: 193.0 micrograms per liter (µg/L)

Update July 10, 2020

The Utah County Health Department issued a Warning Advisory on July 10, 2020, for American Fork Marina and Lindon Marina after sample results collected by the Division of Water Quality (DWQ) in the open water between the two marinas on July 6, 2020, showed microcystin levels exceeding the recreational health-based threshold for a Warning Advisory.

The DWQ monitoring crew will return to Utah Lake next week to conduct a lakewide survey and collect follow-up samples in the area under the Warning Advisory.

A Warning Advisory indicates a moderate relative probability of acute health risk, toxigenic cyanobacteria cell densities between 100,000 and 10,000,000 cells per milliliter (cells/mL), microcystin levels between 8 and 2,000 micrograms per liter (µg/L), cylindrospermopsin levels greater than 15µg/L, or anatoxin-a levels from 15 µg/L to 90 µg/L.

  • Sample date: July 6, 2020
  • Sample type: Elbow-depth composite sample
  • Microcystin: 25.4 micrograms per liter (µg/L)
  • Anatoxin-a: <1.5 ug/L

Update July 9, 2020

Portions of Utah Lake are under a Health Watch after a Division of Water Quality (DWQ) monitoring team observed a water-column bloom in the open water between American Fork Marina and Lindon Marina on July 6, 2020. Another DWQ monitoring team observed a similar bloom at Sandy Beach on July 8, 2020. Samples were collected on both days, and results are pending.

A Health Watch is not a formal advisory level but rather an indicator that a bloom may exist or become more severe based on available information from the DEQ Division of Water Quality (DWQ) and Department of Health. Indicators can include visual reports. The Utah County Health Department and Utah State Parks have been notified.