Florida Sea Grant Extension in Collier County

Welcome to the Collier County Sea Grant Extension Blog

This blog is an opportunity for me to share with you my extension outreach efforts and useful information to make you a more informed coastal citizen. If you have any questions about what you see, feel free to contact me at fluech@ufl.edu.

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Monday, November 28, 2011

Do You Know the Status of Red Tide in Your Area?

Recently there have been  reports of red tide events occuring near and offshore of Lee and Collier Counties. In Florida, a "red tide" generally refers to a bloom or rapid increase in the concentration of Karenia brevis cells, which is a marine algae species (specifically a dinoflagellate) commonly found in the Gulf of Mexico. K. brevis cells release a toxin that, in high concentrations, can be harmful to many types of marine life, and often result in  fish kills.
While red tide events naturally occur in the region, it is important for residents and visitors to stay informed about the status of theses episodes as they can have negative impacts on human health, local fisheries, and the coastal economy in general.
Fortunately, the FWC-Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute publishes a "Red Tide Current Status" page that provides a summary report of current red tide conditions around Florida. The site also includes a map of sampling results and regional status reports. You can sign up for weekly email updates via FWC's listserv by visiting: http://myfwc.com/research/about/information/subscription/ and following the directions. Reports are generally updated on Friday afternoon (except during holiday, in which case the report will be released on the closest day), and additional information, if available, is provided on Wednesday afternoons.