UCF uses 6-foot tubes to study red tide, hopes to find a safe solution

ORLANDO, Fla. — A University of Central Florida red tide study recently made waves in treating the toxic algae event.


The university said the group completed its first successful red tide mitigation technology test with six-foot water tubes called limnocorrals.

Read: 9 things to know about red tide in Florida

Like giant test tubes, these tubes reach the ocean floor from the surface and help scientists monitor ocean conditions.

According to UCF, Mote Marine Laboratory technicians and experts recently placed eight limnocorrals into Sarasota Bay, with four controls.

Read: Red tide guide: How to check Florida beach conditions

The clay solution sprayed on the outside of the tubes, known as clay flocculation, attaches to algae to see how the solution could affect red tide and other animals in the ecosystem.

Red tide has significantly impacted Florida’s coastline, as a Sarasota beachside festival was canceled last week due to a flare-up of the toxic algae.

Read: Beachside festival cancelled after red tide flares up on Florida coast

Kristy Lewis, UCF assistant professor of biology, said this is a positive step in the right direction to finding a solution to red tide, but taking time to examine the data is crucial.

“I want to take every precaution and do our due diligence to ensure we are not doing more harm than good,” she says. “When it’s time to convince policymakers and the people who can take action, we will be prepared.”

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.