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Environment

No Swim Advisories Issued At Beaches In Sarasota And Hillsborough Counties

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City of Venice, FL
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"No Swim" Advisories have been issued at ten Sarasota County Beaches including Venice Beach.

Officials say the amount of enterococcus bacteria found in area waters exceeded acceptable limits.

A no-swim advisory has been issued at more than a dozen beaches in the Tampa Bay region.

While the beaches will remain open, the Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County says it's not advisable to swim at 10 popular beaches.

The affected beaches are Longboat Key, Bird Key Park, Turtle Beach, Nokomis Beach, Venice Beach, Venice Fishing Pier, Brohard Beach, Caspersen Beach, Manasota Beach, and Blind Pass.

Officials says they’ve detected significant levels of bacteria in the water that could make people sick.

The bacteria can be created from a variety of sources. Decaying algae and fish associated with red tide are likely contributing causes.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, red tide remains absent from the waters in Tampa Bay, but toxic blooms are persisting along Florida's Gulf Coast.

Over the past week, fish kills and cases of respiratory irritation have been reported in all the counties experiencing blooms, except for Pasco.

In Hillsborough County, health officials say high bacteria levels are present at several beaches now under no-swim advisories. But these alerts are not associated with red tide.

The beaches include Bahia, Ben T Davis, Davis Islands, E.G. Simmons, and Picnic Island.

During a no-swim advisory, it's also a good idea avoid eating shellfish such as crabs and shrimp collected in the immediate area of any beach with a no-swim advisory in place.

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