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The Florida red tide organism, Karenia brevis, persists at background to very low concentrations in Southwest Florida.
Over the past week, Karenia brevis was observed at background concentrations in two samples collected from Pinellas County; background concentrations in three samples collected from Manatee County; background to very low concentrations in five samples collected from Sarasota County; very low concentrations in one sample collected from Charlotte County; and background concentrations in two samples collected from Lee County.
One sample collected in Northwest Florida (Gulf County) contained background concentrations of K. brevis. Additional samples collected throughout Florida over the past week did not contain K. brevis.
Slight respiratory irritation was reported at Nokomis (Sarasota County) on 5/5. Forecasts for Southwest Florida by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red Tides predict southern and then onshore movement of surface waters and little net transport of subsurface waters from Pinellas to Lee counties over the next three days.
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.