PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Algae blooms known as "June
grass" have been spotted off Panama City Beach, a nuisance for
swimmers but important food source for fish.
The algae has been spotted in patches off the city's Russell-Fields Pier. It is dark in color and was frequently mistaken for oil last year.
June grass provides nutrients for coastal plants and is a foodsource and nursery for small fish, shrimp and crabs. If it gets heavy or washes ashore it can be a nuisance for swimmers and beachgoers and sometimes leaves a strong odor.