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Red tide causing dead fish to wash up on Sanibel

Posted at 6:41 PM, Nov 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-29 06:47:44-05

People on a popular Lee County beach had to avoid dead fish.  Florida Fish and Wildlife says toxic red algae is to blame for all the dead fish that washed up on Sanibel after they detected high levels of red tide along the Lee County coastline.

"It smells bad and the water is very murky," said Pam Boardman, who walked along the beach Tuesday. "Lots of dead sea life," she added.

People who visited the beach set up their umbrellas and chairs away from the dead fish.

"I've been coughing and sneezing a lot," said Julie Stevenson, while she was on the beach.

Some happy they brought some medication with them along with their sunscreen.

"I actually took a Claritin," said Donna Schettina, after a few coughs. "We aren't going to stay as long as we would like," she added.

Florida Fish and Wildlife recommends people with respiratory problems to steer clear of toxic red tide.

"People with asthma shouldn't come," said Schettina. "I have children who have it and I wouldn't bring them or my grandchildren," she added.

Florida Fish and Wildlife says it's safe to swim but to avoid areas with a lot of dead fish because of the high levels of bacteria. FWC will test the waters again on Friday.

You can check the latest FWC red tide testing results HERE.