VICTORIA -- The Capital Regional District is warning people and pets to avoid swimming in Thetis Lake. 

A visible blue-green algae bloom has been discovered in the water at the popular Thetis Lake Regional Park.

The CRD and Island Health say the algae can produce substances toxic to humans and animals.

Park visitors are advised to avoid the water and to keep pets on leashes to prevent them from drinking or swimming in the lake until the advisory has been lifted.

Ingesting water with blue-green algae in it may cause headaches and abdominal pain in humans, and can lead to lethal liver damage in dogs.

The latest updates on the status of the algae bloom can be found on the CRD website