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Red tide returning to Tampa Bay area beaches

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla — It has been months since red tide blooms ravaged the Tampa Bay area. And, while the worst seems to be behind us, the harmful algae bloom still is not letting go of some beaches.

Two weeks ago, reports from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) showed zero blooms of the red tide organism, Karenia brevis, in samples collected in Manatee and Sarasota County.

Fast forward seven days and traces of red tide returned to both areas. Pinellas County, which saw more than 3.6 million pounds of dead sea life wash along its shores during July's wave of blooms, is also still dealing with the persistent algae bloom. Very low to medium concentrations were found in two samples in Manatee County. Background to medium concentrations were found in three samples in Sarasota County.