Some wind, some rain. Most of Hurricane Michael missed areas south of Tampa as it plowed through the Panhandle of Florida, causing extensive flooding and damage as it now heads for the Carolinas. It might have had the benefit of disrupting the Red Tide that plagued our southwestern beaches all summer long, but we will just have to "wait and see" about that... Currently sunny and mildly windy here in South Venice as I head off to work at Staples this evening.
Our Gulf beaches from Tampa south to Fr. Myers are contaminated with dead marine life. The smell is awful. The red tide organisms (a type of algae) produce neuro-toxins that are deadly to things living in the water, and from mild to severely irritating to humans breathing the air.
One day a few weeks ago, I and about six other volunteers tried to pick up and bury dead marine life that the high tide deposited on our semi-private beach (easily reachable only by a private ferry), but it was a losing battle. The next high tide deposited more dead. Normally this stuff is taken care of in a few days to a few weeks by Mother Nature and the Sun, but the volume of the kill has overwhelmed the natural decay processes. Even dolphins and sharks were among the victims of the red tide. I doubt the manatee were unaffected either. It's a terrible mess that will not go away anytime soon. Caused by over-development and lack of concern for the environment. Wish I had done better research before deciding to retire here.