Environmental Stewardship in Action
Tampa Bay is the largest estuary in the state of Florida, encompassing 400 square miles of open water and 2,300 square miles of highly developed watershed that supports industry, agriculture, and a diverse population in excess of 2.4 million people. Estuaries like Tampa Bay are among the diverse and productive ecosystems in the world. More than 70% of all fish, shellfish, and crustaceans spend some part of their lives in the protected waters of estuaries like Tampa Bay. Residents from the Manatee River to Clearwater Harbor and from Hillsborough Bay to the Gulf of Mexico depend on Tampa Bay for commercial and recreational activities.
Tampa Bay Watch is working to preserve the delicate ecological balance that exists in Tampa Bay. A nonprofit organization established in 1993, Tampa Bay Watch performs a variety of habitat restoration and protection activities throughout the year, utilizing thousands of volunteers to help the bay recover from its environmental problems. Individuals of all ages from community groups, scout troops, schools and others participate in salt marsh plantings, storm drain markings, oyster bar creation, coastal cleanups, and wildlife protection each year, demonstrating environmental stewardship in its purest form.
The efforts of Tampa Bay Watch to restore and protect the bay's habitat through stewardship and community awareness provide effective long term improvements to the bay, and empower our community with the knowledge to counteract our environmental problems. Learning how to achieve and maintain a healthy environment is a legacy that will touch our children and their children for years to come.