Beach report shows no sign of red tide impact in Manatee

nwilliams@bradenton.comFebruary 4, 2013 

MANATEE -- The most recent beach report from Mote Marine Laboratory shows no signs of an impact to beachgoers due to red tide in Manatee County.

As of Sunday afternoon's report, location and signs of the toxic algae -- dead fish, red drift algae, respiratory irritation -- are nonexistent at Manatee Beach or Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island.

Red tide blooms result when the water temperature and salinity reach a certain point. In higher concentrations, it can cause respiratory distress.

"People aren't feeling the affect of it right now," said Hayley Rutger, Mote spokeswoman.

But that doesn't mean red tide won't resurface.

Both the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported very low to high concentrations of red tide are present along and offshore southwest Florida from southern Pinellas County to Collier counties. In Sarasota, patchy moderate respiratory impacts are possible through Thursday, the NOAA reports.

The FWC reported very low concentrations were detected in Tampa Bay, which includes Manatee.

The red tide currently affects approximately 140 miles of coastline from Pinellas through Collier County, according to the FWC.

The National Weather Service will be adding red tide alerts to its services for Tampa Bay and surrounding areas, Rutger said, and some of Mote's monitoring activities will contribute to the forecast for red tide alerts.

Recently in Sarasota, county government agencies posted notices at county beaches to warn visitors of red tide. In areas with red tide, people may experience coughing, sneezing, a scratchy throat or teary eyes. These effects should be temporary and go away when those affected leave the beach. Red tide can trigger symptoms and potentially cause serious illness for people with asthma or other chronic respiratory impairments.

Officials were cleaning up a fish kill at Anna Maria Island on Jan. 22, but its source had not been pinpointed

Pet owners should take precautions when bringing their pets to the beach. Dogs that lick their fur or paws after swimming in red tide areas, or eat dead fish on the beach, may experience gastrointestinal illness or other symptoms.

Residents and visitors can listen to Mote's beach report via telephone by calling 941-BEACHES (941-232-2437).

Nick Williams, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-748-0411 ext. 7049. Twitter:@_1NickWilliams

Bradenton Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service