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AUSTIN (AP) – Experts say the algae bloom known as red tide has spread along the Texas coast leaving behind fish kills and discolored water.

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Texas Parks & Wildlife Department officials are trying to determine whether a pygmy sperm whale that washed ashore at Mustang Island State Park was killed by red tide.

Agency staffers planned fish kill assessments Wednesday at Mustang Island State Park south to Bob Hall Pier. Water samples were being collected along South Padre Island, Freeport and in the Gulf of Mexico.

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A TPWD statement Tuesday says reports of discolored water also include San Antonio Bay, Aransas (uh-RAN’-sus) Bay, Corpus Christi Bay and the upper Laguna Madre.

The bloom, named for its reddish color, involves a toxin in algae that can cause neurotoxic shellfish poisoning in humans who consume it.

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