We love to share our amazing life here in paradise and everything that makes it special, but we feel it is important to share a little perspective on the Red Tide situation, especially for those of you who are following this from afar.
We aren’t scientists, but our understanding is that Red Tide is a common name for a worldwide phenomenon known as an algal bloom. The current bloom in our area seems supercharged which appears to be a result, at least in part, of the increased nutrient pollution from Lake Okeechobee water releases into the Gulf, as well as other pollutants.
Florida has declared a state of emergency. We’ve seen too many of our precious marine animals die, our beautiful blue water turned brown, and there were times when we’ve been unable to go to the beach without respiratory effects. It has negatively impacted our businesses, especially restaurants and rentals on the beach, as well as our Captains and Fishing Guides. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission just announced a ban that requires fishermen to release Snook and Redfish in our area when caught because of the devastation to the Redfish and Snook populations.
I recently heard that conditions are improving. The water is clear again in some areas, and dolphins and fish are jumping, so I went to Englewood Beach today. There was no bad smell often associated with Red Tide, I could breathe just fine without coughing, and there were no dead fish on the beach. The water color was green instead of brown. It was encouraging. Our fingers are crossed that this bloom is leaving the area. We’ll keep you posted…