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Red Tide Blooms Have Now Reached Pasco County

Map of Florida showing statewide Karenia brevis concentrations from June 15, 2021 through June 22, 2021.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Toxic red tide blooms are continuing to cause fish kills and respiratory issues along Florida's west coast.

State wildlife officials say in their mid-week report that toxic red tide blooms, which originally started in Southwest Florida, continue to spread north.

The red tide blooms persisting along Florida's Gulf coast have now reached Pasco County.

The bloom is located near Anclote River Park Beach, according to the Florida Department of Health in Pasco County.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reported Wednesday that the toxic algae remains at bloom-levels in the waters of Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee and Charlotte counties, as well.

Sarasota County has just low concentrations of the red tide organism Karenia brevis, along with Lee and Collier counties.

Over the past week, fish kills suspected to be red tide-related were documented in Pasco, Pinellas and Hillsborough, including at MacDill Air Force Base, according to a release.

Respiratory irritation was also recorded in Pinellas and Sarasota.

Dead fish from red tide near MacDill Air Force Base
Airman 1st Class Joshua Hastings
U.S. Air Force
Deceased marine life pools near the marina at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, June 15, 2021. A bloom of red-colored algae, commonly referred to as red tide, produces a neurotoxin that causes fish’s gills to stop functioning properly and causes respiratory issues in other marine animals.

Since 2012, I’ve been a voice on public radio stations across Florida - in Miami, Fort Myers, and now Tampa.
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