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Red tide organism detected in Manatee and Sarasota waters, state says

Mc Abulo

Oct. 09, 2019

What is red tide and why is it in Florida waters?
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What is red tide and why is it in Florida waters?
The organism that causes red tide is once again being detected in Manatee and Sarasota waters.
Sampling conducted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission this week found Karenia brevis at background concentrations off the shorelines of both counties.
FWC defines background levels of red tide as up to 1,000 cells of K. Brevis per liter. At background levels, no unpleasant side effects are anticipated for wildlife or humans.
Still, the appearance of the organism marks the end of a months-long reprieve and raises concerns that red tide could continue to spread and intensify along the Southwest Florida coast.
The first signs of red tide’s return occurred last week in Collier County where low to medium concentrations of K. Brevis were detected. This week, high concentrations (greater than 1,000,000 cells of K. Brevis per liter) were observed, and fish kills and respiratory irritation were also reported.
Waters off of Lee County, north of Collier, were found to have very low to low concentrations of K. Brevis in the most recent round of sampling.
FWC will issue the next statewide red tide status report on Friday.
For more information, call 866-300-9399 anytime from anywhere in Florida to get the latest red tide status report. Call 727-552-2448 from outside Florida.
Ryan Ballogg covers arts, entertainment, dining, breaking and local news for the Bradenton Herald. He won first place for feature writing in the Florida Press Club’s 2018 Excellence in Journalism Competition. Ryan is a Florida native and graduated from University of South Florida St. Petersburg.
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