Cooler weather may keep swimmers away in Manatee County, but not red tide

Waters off Manatee County remain red tide free, according to the latest update from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Friday.

Karenia brevis, the algae that causes red tide, was not present in any of the water samples taken off of Anna Maria Island, off mainland Manatee County, around the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay or in Gulf of Mexico waters offshore.

Bloom concentrations only remain in Charlotte County, where background to medium concentrations of K. brevis were detected.

In Sarasota County, K. brevis levels dropped this week with only background concentrations detected in offshore water samples.

To the north, K. brevis was detected in background levels in one sample offshore of Pasco County for the second week in a row. On Florida’s east coast, K. brevis was also detected in background level concentrations in one sample from Volusia County for a second week in a row.

In Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and Lee counties, respiratory irritation was reported in the past week. Fish kills were reported in Charlotte County.

But cooler weather and rainy conditions will likely keep most away from the beach this weekend.

A line of thunderstorms is expected to move into the area late Saturday into Sunday, ahead of another cold front, according to the National Weather Service. Another line of storms ahead of another cold front is expected to move into the area between Tuesday and Wednesday, keeping the cooler temperatures around.

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