A giant mass of seaweed has begun to wash up on South Florida Beaches
One of the largest seaweed blooms ever seen has begun to impact the beaches of South Florida. Scientists have been tracking the seaweed from satellites and believe that the total amount of seaweed could be somewhere in the realm of 6 million tons.
Reports from as far south as Key West, all the way to Fort Lauderdale have emerged on the attack of the great seaweed blob. Though some of it has washed up on shore, experts believe most of it will stay offshore.
“Larger amounts should be offshore Florida starting in April through July or so. Most of this, however, will stay offshore. If the currents and winds dictate, a patch may be pushed ashore to impact beaches on a local scale.”Dr. Brian Barnes, an assistant research professor at the University of South Florida’s College of Marine Science
According to the Florida Health Department, the seaweed is not harmful to humans, but it can still lead to impacts. Aside from an unpleasant odor, similar to that of rotten eggs, tiny creatures living in the sargassum can produce rashes and blisters.
Health experts advise people never to eat seaweed because it also may contain large amounts of heavy metals such as arsenic and cadmium.