Based on satellite images and analysis of water samples, blooms of the Florida red tide organism are currently present along Bay and Gulf counties in Northwest Florida and Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, and Lee counties in Southwest Florida.
In Northwest Florida over the past week, Karenia brevis was detected in low to medium concentrations in 8 samples collected inshore Bay County; and in low to high concentrations in 7 samples collected inshore of Gulf County. In Southwest Florida, Karenia brevis was detected in background to very low concentrations in 4 samples collected alongshore of Pinellas County; low to medium concentrations in 8 samples collected inshore of Manatee County; background to high concentrations in 22 samples collected in and alongshore of Sarasota County; low to medium concentrations in 2 samples collected in and alongshore of Charlotte County; background to low concentrations in 8 samples collected in, along and offshore of Lee County. Along the Gulf Coast, samples were not collected so far this week from Escambia, Wakulla, Jefferson, Levy, Citrus, Hillsborough or Monroe counties. FWC continues to receive reports of fish kills in Southwest Florida. Both fish kills and respiratory irritation is possible in the areas where red tide is present.
Forecasts by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red Tides show westerly movement of surface waters and little movement of bottom waters in bloom areas in Northwest Florida over the next three days. In Southwest Florida, south-southwesterly movement of surface waters and little movement of bottom waters is predicted over the next three days.
Report Courtesy of the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission