Red tide map

Water samples this week show high levels of red tide near some Englewood and beaches. Find the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s updated map at myfwc.com/research/redtide/.

ENGLEWOOD — Red tide is making a comeback at area beaches, and health officials aren’t taking any chances in notifying people.

The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County announced Wednesday it will post signs with “red tide present” warnings on public beaches where the algae blooms are present.

These include Manasota Beach and Blind Pass Beach on Manasota Key in Englewood, and Venice beaches, like Venice Public Beach, the Venice Fishing Pier, Brohard and Caspersen beaches. Nokomis and North Jetty on Casey Key are included, as are Longboat Key, Bird Key Park, North Lido, Lido Casino, South Lido around Sarasota.

Water samples turned up high concentrations at Blind Pass Beach and medium at Manasota Beach and Stump Pass Beach on Manasota Key, according to results posted Wednesday by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The samples were collected Tuesday.

While the counts have been waning, thick algae blooms appear to be concentrating off Sarasota and Charlotte counties’ Gulf shoreline.

The red tide algae is natural to the Gulf in concentrations less than 10,000 cells per liter of water. However, in higher concentrations of more than 100,000 cells per liter of water, airborne toxins can cause coughing, irritated throats and other respiratory ailments in humans. Higher concentrations can also trigger fish kills.

Red tide conditions can change daily or with changes in wind direction or the changing tides. For the latest information, visit www.ourgulfenvironment.net, myfwc.com, the scgov.net Red Tide webpage, and visitbeaches.org.

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