PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -

A beach advisory for Stillwater Cove Beach was lifted Thursday morning.

Samples collected Tuesday turned up higher levels of what's known as indicator bacteria. Those levels are higher than the state's established bacterial standards for ocean water at beaches that are visited by more than 50,000 people annually and located adjacent to a storm drain that flows during the summer.

Sources of bacteria can include marine life, rainfall runoff, storm drains and human activity. Rainfall in particular is associated with increased bacterial levels due to runoff.

County officials had advised people to avoid recreational water contact at the beach until bacteria levels return to a safe level. Follow up samples taken later in the week determined that bacterial levels had returned to a safe recreational level.

For more information, call the Monterey County beaches hotline at 800-347-6363.