Social media has been inundated with images of dead animals that failed to escape the toxic bloom washing up on the Gulf of Mexico beaches across Florida.
Crews on Florida's Sanibel Island shoveled up and bagged dead fish Thursday as southwest Florida deals with one of the longest red tide outbreaks in years.
The Florida Wildlife Commission reports high levels of algae in the water causing the red tide.
Red tide is the name given to the blooms of a species of microorganisms that have a distinct red colour.
A bloom of red tide algae has swept in from Naples to Tampa, killing marine life and tourism in its path.
"Over the past week, reports were received for multiple locations in Sarasota County, in Charlotte County, in and offshore of Lee County, and in Collier County".
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Harvesting of shellfish like clams, oysters or mussels in a Red Tide area is banned.
Sea turtles, manatees, fish and other animals are seeing a spike in their mortality rate during 2018, especially in Southwest Florida.
The state wildlife agency says red tide, a type of algae, has been a naturally occuring phenomenon along Florida's Gulf Coast since at least the 1840s and that blooms occur almost every year in the Gulf of Mexico.
According to reports, the US Army Corps of Engineers released water from the lake which had poisoned waterways downstream.
She began treating poisoned birds as early as October. Things are so serious that Florida Governor Rick Scott issued an executive order last month to combat the algae, urging local agencies to take emergency actions - including redirecting the flow of water to curb the growth of the blooms.