SOUTH PADRE ISLAND (AP) — Experts say the algae bloom known as red tide has killed about 3 million fish along the Texas coast since early September.

A Texas Parks and Wildlife Department marine biologist on Friday said the number of fish that died is average for a red tide outbreak. Meredith Byrd also told The Associated Press that the last red tide for Texas, from October 2009 through mid-February 2010, killed about 5.5 million fish.

Officials say that Texas drought conditions, limiting how much fresh water flows into bays, are fueling the latest red tide outbreak. The algae thrive in warm, salty water.

Red tide can cause respiratory problems in humans.

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