Warning: High bacteria counts at Hidden Lake - quit feeding water birds

Friday, June 5, 2020

City staff testing the water at Hidden Lake
Photo courtesy City of Shoreline

By Diane Hettrick

Routine testing at Hidden Lake in west Shoreline has revealed high bacteria concentrations and the lake is closed.

The City recommends that people and pets do not come into contact with the water.

Definitely do not allow your dogs to drink lake water.

The source of the contamination is likely droppings from water birds.

Do not feed water birds (or pigeons or seagulls). 

The artificial food source allows the population to increase to a level that is not sustainable. The birds become a nuisance as they move away from the water and start inhabiting and leaving their droppings in other places, such as school grounds. 

In addition, bread is junk food for birds, filling them up with food which has little nutrition. In some circumstances bread can kill birds. 

Some jurisdictions, like Mountlake Terrace, fine people who feed water birds.


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