The Red Tide in Florida Is Subsiding!

December 27, 2018

A harmful algal bloom caused in part by unseasonably warm waters, called a red tide, has been affecting Florida beaches for the past several weeks. Red tides, caused by a bloom of a toxic algae species called Karenia Brevis, kill off marine species and pose a health risk for humans. Additionally, red tides cause beaches to become aesthetically unappealing. When a red tide is in bloom, the water is murky and rust-colored, and may emit a foul smell.

Much of Florida’s coast experienced a red tide in 2018—in some areas, the outbreak even began as early as October of 2017. At the peak of the red tide, in mid-summer, millions of pounds of dead marine animals washed up on shore on beaches in Lee and Collier Counties.

Almost 40 dolphins washed up on Florida shores in 2018, and the red tide is the suspected culprit in those deaths. Dolphins and other marine mammals are particularly susceptible to health problems caused by the red tide, because the algal blooms affect respiratory function in mammals. In fact, people swimming in or spending extended periods of time at beaches affected by a red tide may experience moderate to severe respiratory irritation.

If you’re planning on taking a fishing charter in Sarasota, FL in the near future, you may be wondering how the lingering effects of Florida’s historic red tide will affect your trip. Thankfully, all signs currently indicate that the outbreak is ending, with just a few small patches remaining in select areas. The best way to ensure that you can enjoy your fishing trip in Florida is to double check current water conditions with the team operating your charter. Here is an update regarding water quality throughout the state:

  • Southwest Florida: In most counties in Southwest Florida, red tide concentrations exist at background to very low concentrations. In Manatee County, however, the toxic algae are present at very low to high concentrations. Be sure to check specific beach conditions in Manatee County. Respiratory irritation was reported in several Southwest Florida counties.
  • Northwest Florida: In Northwest Florida, red tide is either not present or only present at background concentrations in Bay County. The Northwest Coast report indicates safe conditions for the majority of the region. There was no respiratory irritation reported in Northwest Florida.
  • East Coast: On Florida’s East Coast, red tide algae samples were only collected at background concentrations in Brevard County. No respiratory irritation was reported on the East Coast. There were also no fish kills reported on the East Coast.

Since 1960, Charter Boat Shark has been a premier fishing charter company in Sarasota, FL. You can count on our friendly, professional associates to provide you with an excellent fishing experience. Our experienced guides and captains possess the skills and expertise necessary to provide you with an outstanding fishing experience unlike any other. We pride ourselves in providing a quality trip for serious fishers of all skill and experience levels. Reach out today to learn more about our comprehensive fishing charter offerings and more.

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