Rust tide returns to East End

The rust tide has now emerged in Sag

The rust tide has now emerged in Sag Harbor, Three Mile Harbor and Accabonac Harbor.

SAG HARBOR - The rust tide threat has returned to the East End, and officials say it could kill fish in the waters off the Hamptons.

Rust tide is named after an organism called cochlodinium that causes some of the waters to become a murky rust color.

Scientists say the rust tide is caused by nitrogen loading, which is caused by too many cesspools that don't work properly, too much fertilizer used on lawns and road runoff.

Dr. Christopher Gobler, who oversees the Stony Brook Marine Science Center in Southampton, says rust tide is different from green or brown tide seen in recent years on the East End. He says left unchecked, rust tide could kill Long Island's multibillion-dollar fishing and shellfishing industry.

"In the beginning of the summer, the scallop population of Peconic Bay looked very good," he says.  "And the rust tide came in, and the scallops sort of disappeared."


advertisement | advertise on News 12

Top 5 Must See

The fire broke out around 2 a.m. Sunday 1 3 injured in early morning Central Islip house fire
Dr. Melinda Edwards taught and inspired the students 2 Former students surprise Baldwin H.S. chorus teacher
Demonstrators sit on the ground along Pennsylvania Ave. 3 Thousands march across US to protest Trump climate policies
Tens of thousands of Long Island students are 4 Thousands of students to opt out of state testing
Trump's road to the White House, paved in 5 Trump's 100-days vows: Hits, misses, unfinished business

advertisement | advertise on News 12

More News

Experts say that even homes miles from the What's in the Water: Burden on the Bays

Nitrogen is seeping into Long Island's waterways by way of septic tanks and cesspools, and

Long Island's communities are situated right on top What's in the Water: Go with the flow

Long Island's communities are situated right on top of the water supply, so residents can

Unlike most parts of the country, Long Island What's in the Water: Toxic Trails

Tainted groundwater is threatening Long Island's water supply. Unlike most parts of the country, Long

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.