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E. coli numbers spike after rains


Surface water staff from the Bandera County River Authority and Groundwater District (BCRAGD) collected water samples from sites along the Medina River, Medina Lake, Sabinal River and their tributaries to assess levels of E. coli bacteria on Wednesday, Aug. 9. The significant spike in colony forming units of E. coli is directly attributed to the heavy rains of Monday, Aug. 7.
According to BCRAGD’s aquatic ecologist Levi Sparks the spike in colony forming units (cfu) is more a result of run off during rains than churning up of the water in the river itself.
“The run off carries manure into the river, which is what normally causes the numbers to spike,” Sparks said. “The city park is more often than not higher than other areas in the county because of the amount of human activity and landscaping. It normally takes a week, sometimes two week for the numbers to get back to a more normal level.”
E. coli is a bacteria found in the gut of warm-blooded animals and is known to potentially cause illness in humans if ingested. No primary contact recreation should take place if the number of E. coli exceeds 399 colony forming units (cfu) per 100 mL of water.
There is always a possibility of infection from E. coli or other waterborne illness. Never drink or ingest river water without proper disinfection.
BCRAGD surface water staff test samples every Wednesday during the summer months and post the results on Thursday at the BCRAGD website at www.bcragd.org and the BCRAGD Facebook page. Results listed below were analyzed at the BCRAGD lab and are for informational purposes only.

Results are also posted on Medina Lake, park at PR 37 less than 10 cfu
English Crossing 240 cfu
Bandera River Ranch Park 190 cfu
Bandera City Park at SH173 860 cfu
Bandera City Park at 1st Street 670 cfu
Ranger Crossing 70 cfu
Moffett Park in Medina 40 cfu
Sabinal River at Lost Maples 50 cfu
Sabinal River at Utopia less than 10 cfu