Red tide & Saharan dust: How are they linked?

The tiny particles can exacerbate the toxic algae blooms

Red tide & Saharan dust: How are they linked?
WFTV Saharan dust and red tide blooms

ORLANDO, Fla. — Saharan dust plumes are common in the western hemisphere during the summer months. This year’s surges have been deeper and more extensive, and it seems like there are more coming.

We learned that Saharan dust particles replenish the Amazon forest and the Caribbean beaches bringing dust and nutrient-rich particles to this side of the world. But these microparticles also have nutrients that can feed toxic algae blooms, like the red tide.

Red tide blooms affect Florida beaches often, when most severe, it can cause respiratory issues, symptoms can be like the ones from COVID-19. So, with this year’s deep Saharan dust plumes and the pandemic, what are researchers doing to mitigate a big bloom? George Waldenberger spoke to Dr. Kristy Lewis at UCF Coastal research about the work being done to possibly suppress a bloom in our beaches.

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