July 29, 2018

SUFB 519: Mass Sea Turtle Mortality In Southwest Florida Due To Red Tide

SUFB 519: Mass Sea Turtle Mortality In Southwest Florida Due To Red Tide

Sea Turtle populations are endangered for all 7 species and there are groups working very hard to ensure their survival; however, a summer red tide event in Southwest Florida is causing high mortality on Sea Turtles that are way above the normal...


Sea Turtle populations are endangered for all 7 species and there are groups working very hard to ensure their survival; however, a summer red tide event in Southwest Florida is causing high mortality on Sea Turtles that are way above the normal mortality rates for these species. 

The average number of Sea Turtle deaths in one year in the Southwest Florida area in 30-35; however, conservation groups have already collected 53 sea turtles in June and July alone (in the Sannibel Island area). 

There seems to be no end in sight as the red tide season usually occurs during the winter, where cool water from the mainland breaks up the red tide blooms. The current bloom won't be broken up by cool water as it is summer and practitioners are worried that the red tide could last until the winter. 

Sometimes, we have to deal with bad news...not my favourite part of the job.

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