FWC update on the red tide status for the Suncoast

Francesco Abbruzzino, The Uncensored Report, LLC




Current Conditions
A bloom of the red tide organism, Karenia brevis, persists on the Florida Gulf Coast. Over the past week, K. brevis was detected in 107 samples, with bloom concentrations (>100,000 cells/liter) observed in five samples from Pasco County, 25 samples from Pinellas County, 16 samples from Hillsborough County, seven samples from Manatee County, and 15 samples from Sarasota County. Additional details are provided below.

  • In Southwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at background to high concentrations in and offshore of Pinellas County (in 36 samples), very low to high concentrations in Hillsborough County (in 22 samples), background to high concentrations in Manatee County (in 14 samples), very low to high concentrations in Sarasota County (in 20 samples), and very low to low concentrations in Charlotte County (in two samples). Samples collected from or offshore of Collier and Monroe counties did not contain K. brevis.
  • In Northwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at background to medium concentrations in and offshore of Pasco County (in 13 samples). Samples collected from or offshore of Santa Rosa, Bay, Dixie, and Hernando counties did not contain K. brevis.
  • Along the Florida East Coast over the past week, K. brevis was not observed.


On Florida’s Gulf coast, fish kills suspected to be related to red tide were reported in Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, and Sarasota counties over the past week. For more details, please visit: https://myfwc.com/research/saltwater/health/fish-kills-hotline/.


Respiratory irritation was reported over the past week in Southwest Florida in Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota, and Lee counties. For current information, please visit: https://visitbeaches.org/.


Forecasts by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red Tides for Pinellas to northern Monroe counties predict net northwestern movement of surface waters and southeastern net transport of subsurface waters in most areas over the next four days.


FWC-FWRI is working closely with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) and other partners on the Piney Point response effort. Status updates and results are posted on the Protecting Florida Together website  (https://protectingfloridatogether.gov/PineyPointUpdate) and on the Tampa Bay Estuary Program website (https://shiny.tbep.org/piney-point/).


The next complete status report will be issued on Friday, July 16th. Please check our daily sampling map, which can be accessed via the online status report on our Red Tide Current Status page. For more information on algal blooms and water quality, please visit Protecting Florida Together.


This information, including maps and reports with additional details, is also available on the FWRI Red Tide website. The website also provides links to additional information related to the topic of Florida red tide including satellite imagery, experimental red tide forecasts, shellfish harvesting areas, the FWC Fish Kill Hotline, the Florida Poison Information Center (to report human health effects related to exposure to red tide), and other wildlife related hotlines.


To learn more about various organisms that have been known to cause algal blooms in Florida waters, see the FWRI Red Tide Flickr page. Archived status maps can also be found on Flickr.


The FWRI HAB group in conjunction with Mote Marine Laboratory now have a facebook page.  Please like our page and learn interesting facts concerning red tide and other harmful algal blooms in Florida.


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