Four different saltwater beaches were found to have poor water quality, and three had moderate quality in the latest weekly test by the Florida Department of Health in Okaloosa County.
Health Department officials found enteric bacteria presence in Liza Jackson Park in Ft. Walton Beach, Poquito Park in Shalimar, Lincoln Park in Valparaiso, and Fred Gannon Rocky State Park in Niceville.
Enteric bacteria, also known as enterococci, normally inhabit the intestinal tracts of humans and animals, and can cause disease, rashes, or infections.
The presence of enteric bacteria in water samples can indicate fecal pollution, resulting from storm water run-off, pets and wildlife, or human sewage.
Garniers Park in Ft. Walton Beach, Marler Park in Okaloosa Island, and Clement E Taylor Park in Destin all passed the water quality tests with "moderate" results.
Wayside Park in Okaloosa Island, Gulf Islands National Seashore in Okaloosa Island, East Pass in Okaloosa Island, Henderson Beach in Destin, James Lee Park in Destin, and Emerald Promenade in Okaloosa Island passed with scores of "good" water quality.