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Red tide is a harmful algal blooms that can sicken or even kill local wildlife. It also causes respiratory issues in humans and other animals. Wochit

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Collier County’s most recent water samples show red tide decreasing but still at levels that can cause respiratory issues.

On Monday, the county tested water from Naples Pier, Barefoot Beach, Vanderbilt Beach, Seagate and South Marco Beach.

Barefoot Beach had the worst conditions, with a medium level of red tide reported. Seagate and South Marco Beach had low levels. Vanderbilt Beach had a very low level, and Naples Pier had a background level of red tide.

Through a county partnership with Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Barefoot Beach, Vanderbilt Beach, Seagate and South Marco Beach are now part of a reporting system that tracks daily red tide conditions.

More: Florida's algae crisis: Particularly strong, long-lived red tide still enveloping region

More: National Weather Service issues beach hazards statement for red tide in Collier County

At the medium level, fish are killed and people can be affected by respiratory problems such as coughing, sneezing and watery eyes. A low level also can cause some respiratory discomfort but is less likely to kill fish. Very low and background levels can cause minor respiratory effects.

“There are no respiratory irritations right now because the winds are blowing offshore,” said Rhonda Watkins, Collier County Pollution Control environmental specialist. “But the winds could be changing tomorrow, which can affect the impact.”

More: Florida algae crisis: What's the difference between red tide and blue-green algae?

More: Environmental experts say Southwest Florida's algae blooms may not ease until winter

No dead fish have been reported on any of Collier’s beaches since Aug. 2.

“I was out there today and there was really no tinge in the throat or real signs of red tide in the air,” said Roger Jacobsen, Naples harbormaster.

More:Track Collier and Lee beaches for red tide alerts

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