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Swimmers Itch Is a Common Problem in Lakes and Ponds

Swimmers itch is a common problem that affects many people who swim in lakes and ponds during the summer months. Swimmers itch is a rash that is the result of a microscopic flatworm larva burrowing into your skin and dying. I know... gross... right! Water fowl and snails are the flatworms host of choice, but if they come in contact with humans they will mistake you for a host. Once burrowed in they die because you are not the appropriate host. After they die many swimmers will have a reaction to the dead flatworm which results in a rash.

Liquid Copper Sulfate products have been used to keep flatworm, flatworm larva and snail populations in check, which will lower the populations and risk to larva coming in contact with swimmers, but ultimately the only complete solution is to get rid of the host or treat the host to stop the cycle. Often times, getting rid of the host isn't an option and treating the host is being tested, but it is impossible to treat every bird carrying the parasite. So we encourage swimmers to use our liquid copper products to reduce flatworm, flatworm larva, and snail populations. The liquid copper products use a fraction of the amount of copper to achieve the same results as granular copper.

There are several step you can take to reduce the chances of getting swimmers itch:

  • Larva lives in shallows, avoid this area
  • Towel off thoroughly as soon as you leave the water
  • Do not feed waterfowl or encourage waterfowl to nest near your recreational swimming areas
  • Reduce the amount of algae growth, which is a food source for snails (Crystal Plex, our liquid copper algae treatment can be used for this)

For more information contact us.