Red tide causing dead sea life to wash ashore on local beaches

Beach goers beware there’s more than just sand and seashells lining the shore.

Chris Stallano and his wife were walking along Fort Myers Beach when they saw dead sea life.

“We saw a couple of dead fish, a crab, and then a big fish head,” Stallano said.

Scott Taylor and his wife are visiting from Michigan and also saw the grim scene on the beach.

“Well it’s a beach, there’s dead stuff, it is what it is. Something I don’t want to hang out with while I’m on vacation? Absolutely. But we can deal with it,” he said.

The rotting fish could be a result of red tide. FWC said that over the past week, they’ve seen low to medium levels of the algal bloom off the Lee County coast.

“We were about probably a mile out on the ocean, and we saw five or six fish laying on top of the water,” said beach goer Tammy Sherman.

Red tide is caused by an overgrowth of microscopic algae and can kill fish and wildlife in the water. But FWC says it’s mostly harmless to people.

“I will be here no matter what. We will stop around the dead fish if we have to,” Taylor said.

As for the dead fish, Lee County Parks and Recreation is currently cleaning up the affected beaches they maintain.

Reporter:Brooke Shafer