Red tide has returned, continues to impact Suncoast beaches

Red tide has returned, continues to impact Suncoast beaches

SARASOTA (WWSB) - It’s a nuisance people were hopeful was gone, but red tide is still lingering here on the Suncoast, especially over the last week.

“When you come to the beach, the water is no longer blue or green, it’s brown and you know that something’s wrong,” said Wayne Rozan, a Lido Key resident.

The Florida Wildlife Commission says there are higher concentrations of red tide at beaches up and down the Suncoast. Because of the patchy nature of red tide, some beaches are worse off than others in Sarasota and Manatee County, but it has improved in certain parts over the last few days. On Lido Beach reports indicated this was one of the clearer beaches for people to enjoy, but some dead fish and conch shells could still be spotted along the shoreline and the smell had some beachgoers coughing and dealing with respiratory issues.

“We feel like it’s risky just coming to the beach, but I warned my boys they can stay on the sand and maybe put their toes in but that’s it,” said Lauren Weems, a Sarasota resident.

Red tide has forced the cancellation of Paddlefest as part of the Waterfest celebration this weekend in Englewood Beach. Despite the traces of red tide at Siesta Beach, the popular Crystal Classic Sand Sculpting event is planned to go off without a hitch this weekend. For many people, they aren’t letting the red tide keeping them from enjoying the beach.

“Unfortunately, every now and then I cough, but it’s still beautiful,” said Kathy Aiello, a Siesta Key visitor from New York.

Here’s where you can go to get the latest information on red tide:

Red tide general information: http://myfwc.com/research/redtide/

Red tide status update (mid-week): http://myfwc.com/research/redtide/statewide/

MOTE Marine Laboratory’s beach report: https://visitbeaches.org/

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