Sargassum Seaweed In Florida, Florida Keys & Key West 2024: Daily Reports

Sargassum Seaweed In Florida & Key West 2024

Florida’s coast will be covered by seaweed this summer. The Atlantic seaweed known as sargassum will be coming ashore and may be particularly plentiful this year.

As for May 16, the situation isn’t critical in any of the parts of Florida. According to the latest update from University of South Florida scientists, Florida will start seeing the peak of the sargassum seaweed invasion in late May this year.

Join our FB group where Florida’s locals post the latest photos and videos on Sargassum Seaweed in FL

July 4 update: Sargassum seaweed situation in Florida improved in June 2024. The levels of sargassum presence on the beach of Florida dropped and both coasts remain relatively clean. Only some parts of the Florida Keys and Key West are seeing higher (medium-level) arrivals. published a water quality map ahead of July 4. The results are based on data from the Florida Department of Health and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Most of the beaches in the area are in great condition.

Sargassum Seaweed Distribution Map

Sargassum distribution map in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea (JUNE 25, 2024)

Sargassum distribution map in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea (MAY 1, 2024)

NOTE: These satellite image predictions should only be taken as an estimation! Sargassum seaweed movement is very unpredictable to track as the situation changes on daily bases.

Latest Updates on the Seaweed Situation in Florida:

June 2024: Sargassum situation in June was stable with low levels

Based on daily updates in the Facebook monitoring group, we can summarize June as a great month in terms of sargassum seaweed levels. They remained high through both coasts of Florida. Sargassum mostly appeared around the areas of the Florida Keys and Key West.

May 17 – May 29: Sargassum seaweed surges in Florida over Memorial Weekend

Florida’s beaches are seeing a noticeable surge in sargassum seaweed. Activity in our FB reporting group skyrocketed during the busy Memorial Weekend with photo updates from all parts of Sunshine State.

I’ve lived here several years and this is the worst that I can remember as far as quantity. I was there yesterday and the levels have increased since Mother’s Day but it did not smell nearly as bad this time.” – Sheri P. said on Facebook under Okaloosa Island seaweed photo report.

Video from Rosemary beach:

May 5 – May 16: Latest photo reports and updates Sargassum Seaweed Florida Reporting FB Group

Sargassum seaweed levels in Florida remains very manageable but according to scientists the seaweed is about to peak.

April 25 – May 4: Latest photo reports from Sargassum Seaweed Florida Reporting FB Group

Seaweed season 2024 is in full swing in Florida and it’s about to start peaking! Most affected areas are expected to be Key West and the Florida Keys.

April 25, 2024: Latest photo updates

April 25, 2024: Florida seaweed forecast: The invasion to start in late May this year

According to the Palm Beach Post, scientists from the University of Florida predict a potentially massive sargassum seaweed invasion in May.

Official seaweed season in the Caribbean has already started but it has been very mild up until the middle of April. Caribbean places such as Cancun, Tulum, and Punta Cana are usually strongly affected and started seeing higher seaweed arrivals only in the past 2 weeks. This delay was most likely caused by lower sea temperatures in the Caribbean this winter.

“Unlike most previous years, total sargassum amount decreased from about 9 million metric tons in February to about 6.5 million metric tons in March,” a report from USF’s Optical Oceanography lab stated earlier this month. “The total amount in March was still above the 75% of all previous March months, indicating 2024 could still be a major sargassum year.” according to scientists.

January 15, 2024: Another record blob of sargassum was measured in the Central Atlantic Ocean

University of South Florida scientists have reported a significant increase in sargassum, a type of seaweed, in the Central Atlantic, near the Caribbean Sea. As of December 2023, the mass of sargassum reached nearly 5 million metric tons, a substantial increase from the 1 million metric tons recorded at the same time in the previous year.

This amount sets a new historical record for the region. Despite a 15% decrease in May 2023, which deviated from the 2022 record high of 22 million metric tons, researchers anticipate 2024 to be another major year for sargassum growth.

Currently, the majority of this seaweed mass is located about 500 miles east of the Caribbean Sea, with significant blooms also observed near Venezuela’s Orinoco River, affecting areas like Trinidad and Tobago and the southern Caribbean Sea.

What’s causing the seaweed problem?

A 2020 study, involving research from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), has linked the surge in sargassum in the tropical Atlantic Ocean to a shift in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) around 2009-2010.

This change led to stronger west and south winds, which dispersed sargassum from the Sargasso Sea into the tropical Atlantic, where it received more sunlight and nutrients from ocean upwelling.

The longevity of this increased sargassum presence is uncertain, with NOAA’s Rick Lumpkin noting the possibility of a similar event occurring in the past, followed by a decline of the Sargassum belt after several decades.

What could be done? These are possible alternative uses of sargassum heading to Florida, according to a new startup

The surge of sargassum seaweed in recent times has triggered businesses to explore novel methods of eliminating it, and its potential uses are already manifold.

Scientists and entrepreneurs aspire to transform it into syrup, bricks, and conceivably even jet fuel. Carbonwave, an organization based in Boston and Puerto Rico, is utilizing it as a constituent in fertilizer, cosmetics, and even synthetic leather.