SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. — Scientists are seeing the lowest levels of red tide on Florida’s west coast since 2017, though a few patches continue to linger south of Naples.
“Its encouraging, but there patches lingering offshore, so I’m not going to say it’s ending, its just been low for several weeks,” said Mote Scientists Dr. Cindy Heil.
Heil is the newly appointed director of the Red Tide Institute. She said the bloom could still come back toward Sarasota and Manatee Counties, depending on the wind direction. Heil is studying ways to stop red tide and prevent future long-term outbreaks.
"It’s a collaborative FWC and it’s meant to draw the best of the best to Florida to come up with better technologies, better ways to mitigate,” said Heil.
Captain Kathe Fannon is hoping the institute will find quick relief. She said the water has been clear for two weeks, but red tide is always a concern for those making a living on the water.
“I’m always afraid of red tide, it’s really hard on us around here if you work the water,” said Fannon.
Dr. Heil said they are developing a clay that could combat future blooms. The research on the clay should be done by the end of this year.
For more information you can visit the FWC's website here.