Two beaches closed after E. coli detection

Lake Harriet. File photo

Southeast Beach at Lake Harriet has been temporarily closed after E. coli bacteria was detected.

The Park Board said it will close the beach, as well as a beach on Lake Hiawatha, after samples found E. coli levels exceeding state safety guidelines on July 7. So far, there have been no reports of illness related to people swimming at those beaches, the MPRB said in a press release.

Parks officials believe the E. coli was likely caused by a mixture of recent rainstorms and “an unusually high amount of ducks and geese” on the beaches. Bird feces can be washed into the lakes by stormwater. Last year, E. coli levels closed several major beaches in Southwest.

Lake Harriet’s North Beach remains open.