ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — August marked the start of what is considered red tide season in Florida. Currently, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) reports no signs of it in the area, though the agency monitors year round, in an effort to get ahead of any potential blooms.

Water samples are collected and sent to the FWC facility in St. Petersburg, where they are examined under the microscope for signs of red tide. If any is suspected, teams are sent out in person for further analysis.

“We’re always monitoring for red tide year round,” said Eric Muhlbach, an assistant research scientist with FWC. “To pick up on an event well ahead of time so we can warn the public.”

Spectrum Bay News 9 got a closer look at the process, which can be seen in the video posted above. Visit the FWC website for more information on red tide.