Red Tide Report (Update)

Red Tide Status Update for August 17, 2018

map showing change in red tide concentrations 


Current Conditions
A bloom of the Florida red tide organism, Karenia brevis, persists in Southwest Florida and currently extends along ~130 miles of coastline. Observations of >1,000,000 K. brevis cells per liter (“high” concentrations) continue to occur at coastal and inshore sites from Manatee to Collier counties, although cell concentrations decreased in parts of Manatee, Sarasota, Lee, and Collier counties relative to last week. Coastal currents important for transporting cells of K. brevis continue to alternate between predominantly northern or southern flow. K. brevis was observed in Pinellas County (for the second week in a row), and additional sampling there and in Hillsborough County indicated that concentrations were below 100,000 cells per liter in all samples examined. More specific details are provided below.

  • In Southwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at background to low concentrations in Pinellas County, very low concentrations in or offshore of Hillsborough County, background to high concentrations in Manatee County, background to high concentrations in or offshore of Sarasota County, background to high concentrations in or offshore of Charlotte County, background to high concentrations in or offshore of Lee County, and very low to high concentrations in Collier County. For additional information, view the southwest coast report Adobe PDF and map Adobe PDF

  • In Northwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at background concentrations in one sample collected from Santa Rosa County. For additional information, view the northwest coast report Adobe PDF and map Adobe PDF.

  • Additional samples collected along the east coast of Florida over the past week did not contain K. brevis. For additional information, view the east coast report Adobe PDF and map Adobe PDF.

Fish Kills
Over the past week, reports were received for multiple locations in Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Lee, and Collier counties. More detailed information is available at /fishkill.

Respiratory Irritation
Respiratory irritation was reported over the past week in Pinellas County, Manatee County, Sarasota County, Lee County, and Collier County. For additional information, view the southwest coast report Adobe PDF. 

Forecasts by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red TidesExternal Website for Pinellas to northern Monroe counties predict variable movement of surface waters with net northern transport expected close to shore, and net southeastern transport of subsurface waters over the next three days.

Red Tide Status Map (August 17, 2018)
map of red tide counts
View a larger map Adobe PDF (August 17, 2018)


To see detailed information on this week's samples, view the current Statewide Google Earth map for August 17, 2018External Website

By using Google Earth, you can zoom in to specific locations and click on stations to see detailed information, including sample date and cell concentration. You must have Google Earth installed on your computer to view this map; the software can be downloaded from the Google Earth websiteExternal Website

Latest Red Tide Status Report Available by Phone
Call 866-300-9399 at any time from anywhere in Florida to hear a recording about red tide conditions throughout the state. Callers outside of Florida can dial 727-552-2448. Standard calling charges apply.

Reports are updated on Friday afternoon except during holidays, in which case the report will be released on the closest day. Additional information, if available, is provided on Wednesday afternoon. To receive an e-mail when the current status has been updated, visit our subscription area.

Additional Information
For additional information about red tide and the current red tide bloom, including information on how to report a fish kill or other wildlife effects, consult health authorities about human exposure, or locate other resources, visit our Red Tide-Related Hotlines and Information Sources article.

Blue-Green Algae Bloom Information

Additional information regarding the current status of algal blooms in South Florida is being consolidated and posted on the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s website:


DescriptionKarenia breviscells/literPossible Effects (K. brevis only)
NOT PRESENT - BACKGROUND background levels of 1,000 cells or less None anticipated
VERY LOW >1,000 to 10,000 Possible respiratory irritation; shellfish harvesting closures > 5,000 cells/L
LOW >10,000 to 100,000 Respiratory irritation, possible fish kills and bloom chlorophyll probably detected by satellites at upper limits
MEDIUM >100,000 to 1,000,000 Respiratory irritation and probable fish kills
HIGH >1,000,000

As above plus discoloration


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