Tourists enjoying SWFL beaches after finding red tide near Tampa Bay

Reporter: Erika Jackson
Tourists are enjoying beaches in Southwest Florida after finding lots of red tide closer to Tampa Bay. (CREDIT: WINK News)

Dozens of fish are washing up dead on Charlotte County shores.

It’s not as big of a problem as the thousands washing up near Sarasota and Tampa Bay.

Businesses in Southwest Florida want visitors to know they can come without having to deal with coughing, sneezing and dark water.

“Dead fish all over the beach, the red tide tickle in the waters really murky. And so it’s not great conditions at all,” said Kelly Wilczynski, from Pittsburgh.

Wilczynski is visiting Sarasota from Pittsburgh but on Friday she decided to drive down to Englewood Beach to get away from the red tide.

“The water is murky. But still, you’ve got that pretty blue color,” Wilczynski said.

Beach chair vendor Mark Timchula wants visitors to know the impact is not nearly as great here.

“It varies on different days, you might come out here one day, and there’ll be nothing and then the next day, there’ll be some smell out at the beach,” said Timchula, owner of The Beach Guy.

Lee and Charlotte County stream a live beach cam 24/7 so you can see the conditions for yourself.

“I’m glad we came just because you know, we’re a family and we got to be together,” Wilczynski said.

Tourism leaders recommend checking their websites for the daily beach condition report in order to know what to expect before stepping foot on the sand.

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