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Colder temps not bringing relief from red tide

Posted at 8:38 AM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-14 08:38:31-05

BONITA BEACH, Fla – The brief cold front and wind Southwest Florida is seeing won’t offer any relief in the way of red tide, according to Fox 4 Meteorologist Trent Aric.

Fox 4 reported live from Bonita Beach Thursday morning, which is one of the beaches seeing the highest concentrations of red tide in Lee County.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission released its latest red tide status map. It shows background to high concentrations in and offshore of Lee County, as well as very low to high concentrations also recorded in Charlotte County and Collier County.

Sometimes with cooler temps and a pick-up in the wind, we hope to see some red tide relief. However, we’re learning it could actually cause even more problems for you.

"Even though the air has cooled and our temperatures have dipped the water is still warm, near 80 degrees,” said Fox 4 Meteorologist Trent Aric. “Red tide thrives in the warm water and unfortunately it takes the water a lot longer to cool than the air,” he added.

Even if we do see the wind help break up the red tide, it could cause more respiratory irritation for people who visit the beach. A Southwest Florida marine biology expert told the Naples Daily News that because wind causes the red tide cells to break apart, it also releases those toxins into the air.