FORT MYERS, Fla.– The waters of Southwest Florida have been looking clearer than usual lately, and people have been taking notice.
Experts say a variety of factors can determine how deep you can see into the water, but lately, things have been looking better than usual.
On Tuesday, it was a windy day on Bonita Beach, a change of pace for the waters which for the past several weeks have been clear enough to see to the bottom.
James Douglas, a marine biologist from FGCU, said the recent clarity comes from a combination of factors, like lower winds, calmer waters and less rain.
It’s an encouraging change of pace, but over time our standards have gone down.
“There’s a thing scientists talk about, shifting baselines, it might be better than it was yesterday, and look back in time and set your goals high for water quality, because it used to be fantastic around here, and we want it like that again.” Douglas explained.
On Tuesday, Douglas also explained the different ways Tannins, Algae and kicked up dirt can cloud our waters as well. He said in the past, light used to penetrate a full two meters down to the bottom year round, allowing vast beds of sea grass to feed manatees.
Now he hopes that the recent clear waters will help bring us closer to the kind of water quality that we expect.
Source : https://nbc-2.com/news/environment/2021/11/23/experts-explain-why-the-waters-of-swfl-are-clearing-up/424