GULFPORT, Florida – Staying fit and enjoying the beauty of retirement life hasn't been as easy lately for Michele LaMontia. 

  • Dead fish, lingering odor in Gulfport due to red tide
  • Residents in one community says it's keeping them indoors
  • Red tide is causing respiratory irratation for some

About three weeks ago, LaMontia says she started noticing dead fish in the water by her Gulfport senior living community Town Shores. 

"The smell is kind of nauseating," she says. 

Red tide has been persistent in Pinellas County for more than two months. The wind and tide patterns make it so some days are better and others are worse, but the smell and respiratory irritation seem to be sticking around. 

LaMontia says it's been the main topic of conversation around her community, where friends are more like family. 

"We talk about it! We say 'gee, my sinuses are clogged and I'm just not feeling as well,'" she says. 

Some in her 55-plus community can't handle the effects of red tide as well as others, keeping some residents inside and isolated. 

"I don't see as many of my friends around as much usual since this has been happening," she says.  "This community here, we're not happy about this at all and we don't know what to do." ​