|With only an estimated 4,000 manatees in Florida waters, this red tide kill of 174 manatees is a big loss.|
The Miami Herald said:
The FWC first detected the red tide in September near Tampa. It has waxed and waned since, with its highest and deadliest concentrations in Lee County waters. It remains unclear exactly what triggers the toxic blooms of phytoplankton. While some factors are natural, such as water temperatures, some scientists believe the outbreaks are worsened by agricultural runoff containing nutrients that feed algae growth.