Mote Marine Laboratory and the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute Focus on Red Tide Research

10.10.19 - Red Tide Research

Local business owners have seen red tide directly impact their business, hits so hard the state government even took notice. With funding from the state, and donations from residents, research can help reduce the severity of red tide.

What Is Red Tide

Red tide, or algal blooms, is a large concentration of organisms that produce toxic chemicals. The intensity of last year’s outbreak left dead manatees, sea turtles and rotting marine life on the beautiful beaches of Southwest Florida. Red tide not only affects marine life, but humans as well. The organisms produce toxins into the water that are then released into the air by waves. These toxins in the air can then cause respiratory issues to those people suffering from asthma and emphysema. Red tide occurs naturally in nature, however, studies have shown that man made pollution can worsen the effects of red tide.

The Research

 Governor Ron DeSantis has created an organization with nearly 5 million dollars in funding from the state to research red tide. Governor DeSantis has also given funding to Mote Marine Laboratory, and the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute. With the funding, these organizations can do studies to help identify what feeds red tide, what worsens the blooms, and the causes and impacts of red tide.

What You Can Do

Residents can help by spreading the word, supporting these organizations, and donating. With help from resident, Mote Marine Laboratory was able to begin studying how we can control and reduce the impacts of red tide. With these new research efforts, the hope is to minimize the affects of red tide, making a positive impact on Florida’s beautiful beaches, and wildlife.