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For the first time in more than four years, Sarasota County may be facing an outbreak of red tide, the noxious algae that kills fish and causes respiratory irritation in people. Water quality samples taken recently by Sarasota County in partnership with Mote Marine Laboratory showed elevated concentrations of the algae near Manasota Beach and near Venice and Englewood beaches, according to data released late Tuesday.
Red tide algae contain neurotoxins that get released into the water and air when the algae die. The poisons kill fish, sea turtles and marine mammals. Severe red tides can make people on the beach cough and wheeze when winds blow onshore.
Zoe Bass, who monitors sea turtle nests on Manasota Key, said she has noticedmany small, dead fish lately on the northern part of the key. She said she had suspected red tide because they seemed to be washing ashore alive, as though escaping a bloom. Bass also said other turtle volunteers reportedseveral dead birds recently.
Originally posted by MightyQuincunx
reply to post by summer5
I am certainly not saying that there is a definite connection here...BUT I have to tell you that seeing this story is beyond weird. Let me explain. I live right in this immediate area (Venice Beach). I am approximately 1.6 miles from the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Anyway, last Thursday night I had gone out to walk my dog and noticed my pool water was very cloudy. My pool is in a screened enclosure. Friday morning I woke to find the pool, which is professionally maintained weekly, was almost tinted with a mahogany color. The cloudiness had not changed for the worse...just the color. I called in our pool service and they responded by adding all kinds of chemicals and stated that all of the levels appeared to be fine with the exception of the chlorine levels (which were very low). What's interesting about the levels being low is that I had noticed that the tabs (chlorine) were still not completely dissolved. Now, our pool service people, have been servicing this pool for 4 years and we have NEVER seen this. The week leading up to this, almost no one swam in the pool because we had pretty rainy weather. The pool guy's light goes off in his head. "It must be all of the rainwater added to the pool", he says. He went on to say that the chlorine just hadn't caught up yet. He left after treating the pool which he said would knock the crap out of anything in the pool and told me not to let my kids swim in it for 24 hours. He left me with instructions to call him if it didn't get better after 24 hours. It didn't get better and he came back. He was so shocked that he called the owner of the company who is a chemist. She arrived and stated that she had never seen anything like it. The two of them dumped in chemicals, cleaned filters and lines and whatever else they could think of. She stated that they would be back in 5-6hours and fully expected that the water would be clear. She also said, "this is just weird". 5 and one half hours later they returned and things were not better. She started doing all kinds of tests and then said, "if I didn't know any better, I would think this was the same algae found in red tide". No resolve today and they will be back in the morning. Needless to say there is no swimming here for a bit. This is just freaky.