The algae bloom, known as Karenia brevis, or red tide, has hit the southwestern coast of Florida hard this year. It reached Manatee County beaches in early August leaving in its wake rotten odors and thousands of dead fish throughout much of August. Clean up efforts started immediately after the declaration of state of emergency by Gov. Rick Scott, containing the problem and clearing the dead fish along with its stensh.
Residents of the Homes of Riviera Dunes were fortunate to be spared the direct effects of the red tide, despite its water access to the Gulf. Being situated six miles from Tampa Bay and 11 miles from the Gulf Coast, has created a buffer zone keeping the red tide from reaching the community.
"There are benefits to living right on the Gulf, but there are also disadvantages," said Nabil Freij. "By living in Riviera Dunes, I like the fact that I have water access to the Gulf, but also keep my distance from it," he added.
Yesterday, a couple of residents from Riviera Dunes took their wave-runners all the way to Egmont Key and back. They reported blue and green clean water, with schools of bait fish frolicking all over Egmont Key beaches. Although many boaters were missing, the catastrophe that the red tide brought to the area fortunately seems to be receding!