So last year I took a two month vacation with my parents down in Florida, what a blast, never did I get to fish the surf like that and while it took me some time to pinpoint what lure works very effectively, once I did, what a blast catching all the wide range of species along the surf. At first, I thought I'd never want to leave Michigan due to the incredible fishery we have here at the Great Lakes, especially the incredible fighters such as musky and smallmouth, but afte catching my first Snook and a Red fish, found out how well these saltwater species of fish fight. Snook are like a musky on steroids, really can't imagine what a tarpon fight feels like, I might fall in love and move down to Florida immediately. What an inedible fishery they have down there, I can't imagine if ever would happen to that natural resource after knowing the history of the BP oil spill.
At the time I was down there, I was hearing reports of how the red tides were just starting to hit Tampa Bay and working there way to Naples and Marco Island. They were warning, it was going to be very bad this year. Luckily, I escaped without being able to deal with it as I was waste high deep many times fishing Naples and Marco Island beach, at times only a few feet away from Dolphins swimming next to me. What a magnificent sight to experience and see!
Despite reports of like this coming in from a surfer on red tide, I still decided to go in the surf waste high and see if I could catch some monster snook!
Well after I left, I got back up to Michigan, my father who I bought a Roku stick for so he could watch fisherman YouTubers on his TV, because he's not tech savy enough to use a computer. He was watching a lot of surf fishing videos and came across a YouTuber reporting about how bad the red tide was, he told me to check out this video. I watched every second of the video as pointed numerous species of fish along the surf, choking me up quite a bit, as he explained how long it takes for a snook to reach the size it had, nothing but a left skeletal structure left over.
While I pointed out in C&G neswpaper how there's not enough fishermen and hunters getting involved with the PFAS and Climate Change issues here in Michigan, community is sort of denial over these issues, I'm finally starting to see more YouTuber fishermen and even charters getting involved in these topics down in Florida, as it's really starting to effect the fishing economy down there, as Hit and Run Charters captain Tyler Kapela covers himself in fish to protest against the Red Tide.
So what is red tide exactly, some people say it's natural and common just like cycle is to Climate Change. So is it natural, yes, somewhat... As I was reading on the comments made by some fishermen, one angler said "Red Tide was even mentioned in the ship logs of Christopher Columbus, it's nothing new." That's very true, red tide was mentioned in Columbuses's logs. But just because something is a natural occurrence, doesn't mean there can't be a sort of imbalance or abundance of due to unnatural occurrences. Take for instance ticks and climate change, due to milder winters we've been having in Michigan, both the disease and rate these ticks replicate have increased due to not enough colder climate and snow to keep these insects at normal levels, because obvious thing is that insects to thrive in warmer climates. Blue green algae has also existed at small levels, but because increased unnatural sewage spill taking place at the sewage plant next to the Spillway of Lake St. Clair and elsewhere in the Great lakes, there has been an increase of this oxygen depriving algae due to blooms. And as we've found out, just like blue green algae responds to the unnatural occurrences such as sewage spills, so does red tide with fertilizer, dog droppings, and lawn clippings. It's even showing that even the blue green algae from freshwater resources like Lake Okeechobee have made their way over to the Caloosahatchee River, which includes brackish water, which eventually make their way over jetties and the surf(saltwater) which can then excel red tide even further.
Wikipedia - "Red tides are a phenomenon of discoloration of sea surface. It is a common name for harmful algal blooms occurring along coastal regions, which result from large concentrations of aquatic microorganisms, such as protozoans and unicellular algae (e.g. dinoflagellates and diatoms). Terrestrial runoff, containing fertilizer, sewage and livestock wastes, transports abundant nutrients to the seawater and stimulates bloom events. Natural causes, such as river floods or upwelling of nutrients from the sea floor, often following massive storms, provide nutrients and trigger bloom events as well. Increasing coastal developments and aquaculture also contribute to the occurrence of red tides. Harmful algal blooms can occur worldwide, and natural cycles can vary regionally."
And I have to make this remark, while we fight over petty things like who owns this spot and that spot, worried about the next YouTuber that's going to blow up a spot and ruin the fishing due to pressure, occurrences that are ruining our natural resource like red tide, blue green algae, PFAS are all huge problems and aren't going away... I'm glad to see more anglers getting involved, but this is Florida, red tide is finally starting to ruin their charter businesses. Still waiting to hear from any charter businesses in Michigan on PFAS, climate change, sewage spills, asian carp etc... I'm sure the day will come, once it starts effecting their business! Just great to see anglers finally discuss this in a group discussion like this here for more attention on the subject!
The Day The Earth Stood Still - "It's only on the brink that people find the will to change."
Might I add, that Florida manatees have been dying off at an alarming record rate as well, both from red tide and boat props, but as well as glyphosate, which kind of goes unreported about. Ya know the herbicide found in a lot of grain and was giving farmers cancer, both some intresting reads, this article and this article here.