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Published: 2017-12-11 11:30:00

A toxin-producing species of algae bloom has been identified during provisional screening of samples collected from Halletts Bay over the weekend.

The samples were collected during an inspection of 13 popular swimming sites in south-eastern Lake Taupō by Waikato Regional Council staff.

The screening – carried out by regional council scientists – suggests the species at Halletts Bay is similar to that found at areas within Five Mile Bay, Acacia Bay, the main lake front in Taupō, Whakaipo Bay and Kinloch Beach last week.

However, the samples will undergo further testing by NIWA scientists to determine how much of the toxin-producing species there is, with the results expected in several days.

Signage erected by Taupō District Council remains in place at Halletts Bay. Members of the public are urged to exercise caution and to avoid entering algae-affected water.

Meanwhile, Taupō District Council has reinstated its water intakes at the lakeside settlements of Hatepe and Motuoapa, which were turned off as a precautionary measure on Friday.

Daily water testing at the intakes was taken over the weekend and the results gave the all clear for any toxin and water clarity issues at the intake sites.