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Your questions about Red Tide’s attack on Pinellas County answered (w/video)

Now that the Red Tide algae bloom that’s been lingering along the Southwest Florida coast since last November has finally reached Pinellas County’s beaches, a lot of readers have questions about the toxic bloom’s effects. Here are some answers.

Why did Red Tide land here after all this time?

The algae bloom shifts a bit each day, depending on winds and currents. This Red Tide algae bloom, the worst in a decade, has slowly been creeping northward along the gulf coast. It hit Anna Maria Island near the mouth of Tampa Bay in early August, and then showed up about 5 miles off Fort DeSoto by the end of August. It reached Pinellas’ famous beaches over the Sept. 11 weekend and has been here ever since.

Where is it?

Generally speaking, all the beaches south of Tarpon Springs have been hit. As of Monday the bloom had also invaded the Intracoastal Waterway as well as residential canals, so it’s popping up all over.