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Red Tide SW Florida

Paumavista

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I'm having a hard time getting a "clear picture" of the situation right now....and what the forecast might be over the next few months. I thought this was "not the season" for Red Tide (thought it occurred more frequently in the fall?); but we were on Captiva for a few weeks in December and there were a couple of days particularly right before we left on Dec 18th where I noticed it when we walked on the beach. It didn't bother me at all bike riding or away from the water's edge & if I wore my mask while walking it didn't bother me. I did NOT see any dead fish but it smelled when we went to the beaches on Sanibel (enough that we left immediately) and it made my throat tickle if I didn't wear my mask near the beach club on Captiva (and I didn't feel comfortable sitting there reading). I'd like to visit again in February....maybe early March....but I'll skip it if there's even a possibility of red tide. Anyone more familiar with the area able to comment?
 

silentg

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It was bad a couple of years ago, and more widespread . Hopefully it will go away soon.
 

rapmarks

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Can’t predict because they make releases from lake O.
 

LMD

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No real way to tell. This weekend was pretty bad on Marco. Hopefully it clears up soon- we want to try our new kayak!
 

Sea Six

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This red tide frustrates me so much. I used to think it was worse in the September time frame when we got so much rain and there was run-off into Tampa Bay, Charlotte Harbor, The Caloosahatchee River, and so on. The theory was that the rain water run-off took so many fertilizer chemicals from the ground surface and polluted the water and fed the algae. Down in the Sanibel / Naples / Marco area we were told that Lake Okeechobee got over filled, and water releases were necessary, which polluted the whole Ft Myers/ Sanibel and eventually Marco areas. Now, when this happens during times with almost NO RAIN and low temps, and no releases from the big lake O, I am worried about where this is coming from. It's just too random for me. Down here where I live we are not allowed to spread lawn fertilizers during the summer, so that our chemicals are not washed into the gulf.
 
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Sea Six

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I hope this doesn't hurt our stone crab season - it's been good so far.
 

Paumavista

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https://myfwc.com/research/redtide/statewide/ is the link for daily updates. As Neils Bohr said' It's hard to predict things, especially when you are talking about the future"
We are in Naples and the red tide has been bad for a number of weeks. it is unusual or this time of year.
Thank you......this was the "map" I was looking for. I am very disappointed to see these "red" and "orange" concentrations. We LOVED our weeks at Captiva (especially for isolating during COVID); We definitely want to go back (soon)....but walking the beach is "what I do" (while my husband fishes - we don't eat fish); but if we can't "do what we love" then it doesn't make sense to travel. (I am also terribly disappointed and sorry for businesses in these areas.....it's just one more difficult barrier to "having customers". :cry:.......I also agree with SEA SIX.....I thought it had something to do with rains and overflow.....but there wasn't much rain while we were there......so there's something else; so sad.
 

rapmarks

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Saw a dead fish about five feet from my front door and we are not on the water. A bird must have literally lost his lunch We met for book club at patio area by our club. A Cooper’s hawk kept trying to chase us off
 
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JudyH

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I was at the beach alone at Venice tonight and I was coughing when I left for about an hour. Then things were fine. Allergies? Red Tide?
 

Laurie

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I was at the beach alone at Venice tonight and I was coughing when I left for about an hour. Then things were fine. Allergies? Red Tide?
Red tide is my guess, having experienced it in 2019.
 

Deb & Bill

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Right now it isn't so bad. Reports at Marco show very little after weeks of high levels. Sanibel has some moderate levels right now.
 

needvaca

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I thought red tide there was only September thru November? Very disturbing that it’s extended to January now.
Is pollution from lake okeechobee getting much worse?
 

theo

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I thought red tide there was only September thru November? Very disturbing that it’s extended to January now.
Is pollution from lake okeechobee getting much worse?
There is really no hard and fast rule or definitive "seasonality" to red tide outbreaks.

Here in the colder waters of the Northeast, such algal "blooms" (usually of Alexandrium fundyense) are generally limited to the summer months, but in the much warmer Gulf waters of SW Florida, all bets are off. The belief that Lake O discharges are the only cause of the "blooms" (of Karenia brevis) seems to be unfounded. Although Lake O discharges are most certainly one cause, there are SW FL Gulf red tide "blooms" that seem to be completely unrelated to either the timing or occurrence of Lake O discharges. :shrug:
 
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