According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Agency, a red tide bloom was spotted last week that extended across Lee and Collier counties. NOAA satellite imagery showed the bloom boundary was about 30 miles from the coastline, extending from southern Lee County south to Marco Island. Collier County officials said it is the worst red tide they have experienced since 2006. They had reports of dead fish scattered along the county’s beaches. The Collier County Health Department advised people with chronic respiratory problems, namely asthma or emphysema, to avoid the beach because the toxin can aggravate their conditions. They also advised anyone who experienced watery eyes and throat irritation to go inside.
Florida Fish and Wildlife released a detailed red tide report on December 2nd that still found red tide in the Lee and Collier County area. There were high to medium concentrations along shore and offshore on Sanibel Island south to Lovers Key State Park. There were low to medium concentrations in Collier County. FWC says the bloom still lingers there and continued fish kills remain a possibility.