Florida Red Tide Update

ST. PETERSBURG (970 WFLA) -- Scientists and state officials studying this year's record setting red tide outbreak give reporters an update... at the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg. 

This week the algae bloom spread to waters off the east coast.  Jackie Dixon, dean of the University of South Florida College of Marine Science, says that's likely because of the current that loops around Florida from the Gulf, pushing the algae bloom around the state. 

Gil McRae, executive director of the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute , says what's unusual about this red tide is not how severe it is... but how long it's lingered close to the beach, making it seem worse than other outbreaks that stayed offshore. 

The head of the state Department of Environmental Protection defended Florida's response to red tide and blue green algae in Lake Okeechobee. Noah Valenstein says Everglades restoration funding is at an all time high and the federal government needs to step up and do its part.

Meantime, the October 3rd FWC update finds high concentrations in Pinellas, Hillsborough and Sarasota county waters, but an overall decrease. Low to medium concentrations are reported off Martin and Palm Beach Counties. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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