Red Tide Current Status

FWC reports on the current status of Karenia brevis blooms using tables, static maps, and interactive Google Earth maps. Archived status maps can be found in our Flickr gallery.

Red Tide Status Report (July 13, 2018)

A patchy bloom of the Florida red tide organism, Karenia brevis, persists in Southwest Florida.

In Southwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at background concentrations in one sample collected from Manatee County, background to medium concentrations in 17 samples collected from Sarasota County, very low to high concentrations in five samples collected from or offshore of Charlotte County, background to high concentrations in 14 samples collected from or offshore of Lee County, and background to medium concentrations in four samples collected from Collier County.

Additional samples collected throughout Florida over the past week did not contain K. brevis.

Over the past week, fish kills were reported in Southwest Florida in Manatee County (Manatee Public Beach), Sarasota County (Casey Key, Manasota Beach, Nokomis Beach, Siesta Key Beach, Venice Beach, Venice North Jetty), Charlotte County (Englewood Beach, Manasota Key, Lemon Bay), Lee County (Captiva Beach, Gasparilla Island Range Lighthouse, Gasparilla Island State Park) and Collier County (Marco Island, Stone Court Canal).

Respiratory irritation was reported over the past week in Sarasota County (7/10 and 7/12 at Lido Key; 7/5-7/7 and 7/11-7/12 at Manasota Beach; 7/6-7/7 at Nokomis; 7/9 at Siesta Key; 7/5-7/7, 7/9 and 7/11 at Venice Beach; 7/6-7/7 at Venice North Jetty), Lee County (7/10 at Gasparilla Island Range Lighthouse; 7/7 at Gasparilla Island State Park), and Collier County (7/7 and 7/9-7/12 at South Marco Beach).  

Forecasts by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red TidesExternal Website for Pinellas to northern Monroe counties predict variable surface currents with net southern movement for most areas, and southern, onshore transport of subsurface waters over the next three days.

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:

Red Tide Status Map (July 13, 2018)

View a larger map Adobe PDF (PDF 394KB) (July 13, 2018)

Regional Status Reports and Maps (July 13, 2018)

Southwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 123KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 292KB)
East coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 64KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 401KB)
Northwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 45KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 347KB)

To see detailed information on this week's samples, view the current Statewide Google Earth map for July 13, 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

The FWRI Red Tide Status Line is now available to callers throughout the state. FWRI updates the recording each Friday by 5 p.m. Red Tide Status Line: 866-300-9399 (toll-free inside Florida only); 727-552-2448 (outside Florida).

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.

FWC's Red Tide Action Report

Red tide is a naturally-occurring microscopic alga that has been documented along Florida’s Gulf Coast since the 1840’s and occurs nearly every year. Blooms, or higher-than-normal concentrations, of the Florida red tide alga, Karenia brevis, frequently occur in the Gulf of Mexico. Red tide begins in the Gulf of Mexico 10 to 40 miles offshore and can be transported inshore by winds and currents.

FWC Actions and Partnerships:

  • FWC operates the toll-free fish kill hotline. To report fish kills, contact the FWC Fish Kill Hotline at 800-636-0511 or submit a report online. Reports from this hotline help FWC researchers track and better understand the impact of red tide in Florida.
  • FWC remains available to local agencies and partners in affected areas, including area business and tourism groups in southwest Florida. Any local agency or group that has any questions or concerns can contact Kelly Richmond from the FWC at 727-502-4784.
  • FWC continues to partner with the Florida Department of Health to advise residents and visitors of any potential health impacts. Residents and visitors can contact the DOH’s aquatic toxin experts at 850-245-4250 or contact their local health department for any concern about health safety.
  • FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute and Mote Marine Laboratory work together to monitor Karenia brevis. This cooperative effort is designed to help mitigate the adverse impacts of red tide. This joint research program that includes red tide monitoring, research and public outreach and education has resulted in better tools and ongoing monitoring for red tides along the Gulf Coast.
  • In partnership with the FWC, the Collaboration for Prediction of Red Tides (CPR) at the University of South Florida offer a new Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) tracking tool that generates a 3.5-day forecast of the bloom trajectories.
  • To protect public health, FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute’s Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) group closely monitors the status of K. brevis on Florida’s coasts, providing technical support to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACSExternal Website), the agency that regulates approved shellfish harvesting areas.  
  • Since 2000, FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute established a Red Tide Offshore Monitoring Program, which is a volunteer program for citizens to help collect water samples from routine collection points and sites reported for suspected harmful algal blooms (HABs).The timely sampling by volunteers allows researchers to provide an early warning of offshore algal blooms and investigate reported events as they occur. The Program needs volunteers to collect samples from all coastal Florida counties. To view more information visit, Red Tide Offshore Monitoring Program or use the Volunteer SignUp Form.

Red Tide Resources

Previous Regional Status Reports and Maps

July 6, 2018
Southwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 141KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 403KB)
East coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 45KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 290KB)
Northwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 42KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 479KB)
Google Earth mapExternal Website

June 29, 2018
Southwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 254KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 274KB)
East coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 58KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 441KB)
Northwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 55KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 512KB)
Google Earth mapExternal Website

June 22, 2018
Southwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 128KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 390KB)
East coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 60KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 297KB)
Northwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 51KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 422KB)
Google Earth mapExternal Website

June 15, 2018
Southwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 236KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 400KB)
East coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 66KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 288KB)
Northwest coast report Adobe PDF (PDF 49KB) and map Adobe PDF (PDF 481KB)
Google Earth mapExternal Website

Additional archived status maps can be found on FlickrExternal Website

Key for Results

DescriptionKarenia brevis cells/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

Hotlines and Information Sources

FWC Facts:
Many species of fish (many groupers, snook, etc.) are hermaphroditic and change sex at some point in their life.

Learn More at AskFWC