Manatee County waters remain free of red tide, according to the latest report from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
The Karenia brevis algae that causes red tide algal blooms was not present in any samples taken off Anna Maria Island, near the Sunshine Skyway bridge, off mainland Manatee County or farther out in the Gulf of Mexico.
Levels dropped in Sarasota County, where high, medium and low concentrations of red tide were detected last week.
Earlier this week, only background (0 to 1,000 cells of K. Brevis per liter) to very low (less than 1,000 to 10,000 cells of K. Brevis per liter) concentrations were observed. And the most recent sample data released on Wednesday shows that red tide is at background levels or no longer present.
Around the rest of Southwest Florida, K. brevis was observed at background levels in Lee County, background to very low levels in Monroe County, very low levels in Collier County and medium levels in Charlotte County.
Red tide also popped up in some isolated places on Florida’s northwest and east coasts this week. It was observed at background concentrations in one sample in Pasco County and in one sample in Volusia County.
No fish kills were reported in any counties this week, according to FWC. Respiratory irritation was reported in Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota and Lee counties.
A short-term red tide tracking map produced by the College of Marine Science at University of South Florida and the Florida Wildlife Research Institute predicts that Manatee County waters will remain red-tide-free over the next three days.