Charlotte, Sarasota counties without red tide | New
Charlotte and Sarasota beaches are the top pick for beachgoers this weekend.
The coasts of both counties appear free of concentrations of toxic red tide algae this week, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Thursday.
The state agency collected samples this week, and none show the presence of a red tide in the Gulf of Mexico. Lemon Bay is also free of algae.
Charlotte Harbor, which has seen several weeks of average concentrations, also appears to have cleared up. A single sample of water near Punta Gorda revealed a low concentration of 10,000 to 100,000 cells per liter of water.
The south shore of the mouth of Tampa Bay in Manatee County experiences higher concentrations of red tide. State officials are taking samples from the area affected by the Piney Point gypsum stack spill in April. The waters of Lee and Collier counties to the south, particularly around Sanibel Island, appear to have low and medium algae concentrations.
At high concentrations, the red tide algae, Karenia brevis, releases toxic gases that can cause respiratory irritation, coughing, tears in the eyes and throat irritation, to people and animals on the shore. , and can kill marine life, including fish, reptiles and mammals.
To learn more about the Red Tide and for updated maps, visit myfwc.com.