CAPE CORAL, Fla. — Neighbors in Cape Coral near the intersection of Country Club and Veterans Memorial Parkway woke up to an unwelcome sight. A significant algae bloom that seemed to appear overnight.
Debbie Martin, a Cape Coral resident for over five years, was shocked at the rapid appearance of the algae. While she's used to some algae in her canal, Martin noted, "It looks like a swamp!" emphasizing the unusual speed and timing of the bloom.
"It's looks gross, and I haven't seen it bloom this early in the season," she added.
The situation has also impacted visitors to the area. Linda Smith, who rented a home in Cape Coral for vacation, found her experience dissapointing by the sudden change. What was once a great view has been obscured by the bloom.
"It changes the vacation, we're not going to be sitting here and enjoying the sunset, that's for sure," Smith stated.
Smith reconsidered her future visits, saying, "I already have considered not coming, this is our second time, and we're not coming again."
In response to the growing concerns, Cape Coral city officials acknowledged the issue. The city's Environmental Resource Division is actively monitoring the algae mats. However, neighbors like Debbie Martin want more action.
"If we don't fix it now, it's only going to get worse," Martin said.
In an effort to further understand the situation and its impact on the community, we colected a sample of the algae for analysis. The sample will be submitted to the FGCU lab this Friday to determine the health risks associated with the algae bloom to the residents of Cape Coral.