Those sick of the stench of thousands of dead fish littering their bayside canals will see some relief soon.
After reviewing several Longboat Key bayside waterways Wednesday afternoon, Town Manager Dave Bullock said he intends to use some of a $50,000 budget line item for red tide cleanup use to get rid of the dead fish.
Town staff is finishing up a map assessment to give to a contractor that will then submit a cost estimate and perform the fish cleanup in designated waterways.
The contractor, Bulluck said, will get to work as early as tomorrow.
Strong easterly winds and currents have brought a concentration of dead fish associated with red tide algae blooms into bayside canals and onto Beer Can Island.
Red tide is a harmful algae, which causes respiratory irritation in humans and serious health issues in marine life and pets. Medium concentrations of red tide in Manatee and Sarasota counties have been reported over the last month.
Last week, fish kills associated with red tide was removed at Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island.
Red tide algae blooms have been detected off the coast in both Manatee and Sarasota counties.
The town of Longboat Key does not clean up minor fish kills from its shores but will offer assistance for moderate to severe fish kills if it's deemed necessary by Bullock.
The most affected area is Country Club Shores and Bullock is recommending residents remove their boats in the canals in the next day, if possible, so the contractor can do a more effective fish cleanup in the canals.
Contact Kurt Schultheis at [email protected].