Ruined by Red

FL suffers red tide

Gloria Gjuraj, News Section Editor

As summer approaches it is important that we choose a vacation destination. Unfortunately these options may be limited due to the red tide that has overtaken the Gulf Coast. Red tide is a toxic algae that forms a blob of seaweed that travels across the Atlantic Ocean and causes the toxicity to spread.

The recent growth of this algae has killed sea life which releases a smell of dead animals on the shore of these beaches. As far as humans go, we too can be affected by this toxin. The stench released by the red tide causes coughing, itchy eyes, sore throat and difficulty breathing. Although this is a natural algae, professors at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) believe the pollution heightened this algae bloom. Though pollution is not the cause, it may add to the problem.

This also affects those tourists who come to FL and specifically the Gulf for vacations. They are advised to not go near strips of the beach that have a stench or cause them irritation. The good thing for Floridians and tourists is that the red tide does not completely cover the Gulf and it is patchy across the ocean so if you come across a strip that appears to be affected by the algae, you could move down to get away and continue to enjoy the beach.