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Water-Related News

High concentrations of red tide causing fish kills in Sarasota County

Red tide is getting worse in the Tampa Bay area, causing fish kills last week in parts of Sarasota County.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission collected water samples from Sarasota County this week and found high levels of the red tide organism, Karenia brevis.

Though red tide wasn't found in all areas of Sarasota County, very low to high concentrations of the organism were found in several areas off the shore. Scientists also found very low concentrations of red tide off Clearwater Beach.

Red tide was first detected off Sarasota County last week in medium concentrations. Fish kills were reported this week in Venice and Englewood.

Michelle Kerr, a spokesperson for FWC, says that the organism is natural to the Gulf of Mexico, but it can multiply uncontrollably, and that’s when it becomes dangerous.