Volunteers are the lifeblood of Tampa Bay Watch! They accomplish restoration and protection activities we could never afford hired staff to complete. Youth and adult volunteers are involved each year in a variety of hands-on habitat restoration projects such as oyster dome construction, oyster shell bar installation, salt marsh plantings and coastal cleanups to help the bay recover from its devastating environmental problems. Volunteers of all ages participate in our projects. Our coastal cleanups and salt marsh plantings are family-friendly and open to all ages. If you would like to be kept informed of our numerous volunteer opportunities, complete our online registration so you will receive our weekly email message which advertises our upcoming environmental restoration projects.
salt marsh harvesting & planting events
November 19- 22, 2014
We need your help to protect our local coastline and waters by planting and harvesting salt marsh!
Tampa Bay Watch, in partnership with Southwest Florida Water Management District, is recruiting 400 volunteers to help plant 40,000 salt marsh plugs as part of a restoration effort at Rock Ponds near Ruskin on Saturday, November 22 from 9am - 12 noon.
Planting salt marsh protects and stabilizes low-lying coastal lands and provides protection and food sources for estuarine and coastal fishery food chains of many species of fish and marine mammals. Salt marsh and other coastal habitat populations have declined more than 80% in the past 100 years due mostly to dredging, construction, and waste water discharges. This loss has damaged a crucial link in the bay's food chain for fish and wildlife resources, significantly impacting the bay's fisheries. This is your chance to get come out with your community and help protect, restore, and conserve our precious coastal habitats. The planting will spread knowledge about ecological stewardship as well as stabilize the local shoreline and provide habitat for local creatures.
400 volunteers are needed, so pass the word on to everyone you can!
Click the desired date and activity below to volunteer for this event.
Salt Marsh Planting: 11/22
Blue Ocean Film Festival Sea Oat Planting
November 8, 9 am - Noon
Fort De Soto Park
Tampa Bay Watch is recruiting volunteers to plant sea oats at Fort De Soto Park on Saturday, November 8 from 9am until noon as part of a Blue Ocean Film Festival community project. Reservations are required.
This project will restore coastal sand dune habitat at Fort De Soto Park. To achieve this, Tampa Bay Watch will plant 8,000 sea oat plants on the Northern tip of Fort De Soto park, which will extend the reach of dune vegetation, help restore the sand dune system, and increase its resilience. By planting coastal vegetation species like sea oats, habitat will be enhanced by creating a barrier to absorb storm energy and protect our coastlines from erosion. This project will improve coastal habitats in the bay for native insects, birds, sea turtles, and bay residents.
Volunteers will meet at Shelter 1 in Fort De Soto Park at 9 am.
Information for registered volunteers:
• You'll need to wear clothes and shoes that you don't mind getting dirty.
• Please bring a water bottle to fill up and carry with you. There will be coolers full of water to refill your bottle.
• Wear a hat, sunscreen, and bug spray, and bring garden gloves.
• There are one or two tolls on the way to Fort De Soto (depending on your route), and a free parking pass will be provided to registered volunteers to permit them access to the park and free parking near the site.
Email Annie Dowling or call (727) 867-8166, x233 with questions about this project.