Lake Algae


For a number of years the Lake Wanaka water supply has been affected by the presence of algae, often known as 'lake snow'. The algae is not harmful from a health perspective, but has had an effect water filters, irrigation fittings, new appliances and other equipment. The algae is not noticed at all the properties in Wanaka and no pattern has been found.

In mid-2016 QLDC began receiving reports of algae build-ups in a number of water filters around Queenstown that take water from Lake Wakatipu. It has been identified as the same algae that has affected the water system in Wanaka for the past eight years or so.

Again, it is not a health concern, but if you notice a significant drop in water pressure at home it might pay to check and clean your water filter, and lodge a Service Request with us so we're aware of the scale of the issue. We’re currently working with the Otago Regional Council and their partners to learn more about the naturally occurring algae, what causes it, and what treatment options are available.

The Council has released a brochure "Managing Algae in Your Water Supply" which details the possible effects of the algae and how to deal with it.

To view a Facebook live video of a presentation on lake algae given by ORC and QLDC on the 14th of December 2016 - click here

Please contact us if you would like any further information.

Managing Algae in your Water Supply [PDF 1.29MB]