Tests have found small amounts of the organism that causes red tide off the coast of Siesta Key in Sarasota County.
Biologists with the state’s Fish & Wildlife Research Institute say the very low concentrations of Karenia Brevis haven’t caused any ill effects…such as fish kills, or respiratory problems for people.
FWRI researcher Jay Abbott says while blooms of the toxic, naturally occurring algae often form this time of the year…the current levels are so low there’s little cause for concern.
“The concentrations that we found were only slightly above what we consider background…which is the concentration of Karenia Brevis that is normally occurring in the Gulf of Mexico. It doesn’t ever completely go away.”
Abbott says they consider 1000 cells per liter to be background concentration…and that the current levels are only slightly above that.
It’s the first time Karenia Brevis has turned up near Sarasota since one of the worst blooms in history finally disappeared about 5 months ago.
Trace amounts of red tide were also found recently off the coasts of Lee & Collier Counties.
Thursday, 29 June 2006 01:00