Red tide blooms within Tampa Bay: Health alert issued for Picnic Island and Davis Islands beaches

Health officials in Hillsborough County is notifying the public of red tide blooms within Tampa Bay with health alerts being issued for Picnic Island and Davis Islands beaches.

Image/DOH-Hillsborough

Caution signs have been placed at Ben T. Davis and Cypress Point due to the presence of red tide in the Tampa Bay area.

Some people may have mild and short-lived respiratory symptoms such as eye, nose and throat irritation similar to cold symptoms. Some individuals with breathing problems such as asthma might experience more severe symptoms.

Usually symptoms go away when a person leaves the area or goes indoors. Health officials recommend that people experiencing these symptoms stay away from beach areas or go into an air-conditioned space. If symptoms do not subside, please contact your health care provider for evaluation.

The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County recommends that you:

  • Do not swim around dead fish at this location.
  • If you have chronic respiratory problems, be careful and consider staying away from this location as red tide can affect your breathing.
  • Do not harvest or eat molluscan shellfish from this location.
  • Do not harvest or eat distressed or dead fish from this location.
  • Rinse fillets from healthy fish with tap or bottled water. Throw out guts.
  • Keep pets and livestock away from water, sea foam and dead sea life.

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