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Scheduled projects at Tampa Bay Watch

We couldn’t accomplish any of our restoration or education goals without the help of our active volunteer base! Volunteers of all ages from children to retirees help in habitat restoration projects, lend a hand at our annual fundraisers, and represent our organization at community events to increase awareness. On an annual basis, approximately 2,000 volunteers from corporate groups, families, individuals, and more help us accomplish our mission. Still have questions? Click here!

Volunteers are not currently required to wear face masks at our habitat restoration projects, but they are optional for those who wish to wear them.

Upcoming events:

Native Planting at Robinson Preserve

Saturday, September 24 from 9 AM - Noon

at The Robinson Preserve Expansion, 10299 9th Ave NW, Bradenton, FL 34209

In collaboration with Manatee County, Tampa Bay Watch is co-hosting a National Public Lands Day planting event and Open House at Robinson Preserve Expansion. We will be planting coastal wetland species to enhance habitat and promote shoreline stabilization in the riparian zone of a created brackish water pond. Planting will take place from 9am-11:30am (or until completed) with a loose “come- and-go-as-you-please” schedule.
We encourage planting volunteers to take the opportunity to explore the nest as well as the Robinson Preserve Expansion’s many walking trails after planting.
This event is family-friendly and open to all ages! Outreach tables and estuary-themed educational activity stations will be set up around the NEST for members of the public and volunteers, open from 9 AM – Noon.

Oyster Shell Bar Project to Restore 2D Island

October 13 & 14, 9 AM - Noon

Meeting location is Williams Park Boat Ramp, 8749 U.S. 41, Riverview, FL 33578.
This project involves shoveling fossilized shell into mesh bags, transporting the bags via Tampa Bay Watch’s boats, and placing them on the shoreline to create a series of oyster bars. This project is an effort to restore lost habitat systems to the bay, prevent further erosion of the shoreline and improve water quality through natural biological filtration. Click here to read more about the project and/or watch a video of a past oyster shell project.
Click below to register:

29th Annual Fishing Line Island Cleanup

October 15-23, 2022

Join Tampa Bay Watch and Audubon Florida for the 29th Annual Fishing Line Island Cleanup.

The goal is to remove hazardous monofilament line from mangrove shorelines. Monofilament or “mono,” is a fancy word for the commonly used plastic fishing line. It has great fishing utility, but can take over 600 years to break down and poses serious threats to birds and other wildlife. Improperly discarded mono and fishing gear leads to wildlife entanglement, accidental hooks, and ingestion.

This will be a self-led event, where participants will travel out to their designated location by personal boat/other watercraft any day between October 15-23 to target shorelines where cast line has been caught in the tree line. Volunteers will compile the recovered monofilament, to be collected, cleaned, and recycled.

There are a variety of sites in which to participate—all critical bird nesting habitat—throughout Pinellas, Hillsborough, and Manatee.

Reef Ball Installation at MacDill Air Force Base

October 28, 9 AM - 2 PM

Tampa Bay Watch is recruiting volunteers to help install oyster reef balls on the shoreline of MacDill Air Force Base.

This is a heavy project as reef balls weigh 200 pounds each. Two people will carry one reef ball at a time to install it on the shoreline. Reef balls stabilize shorelines and prevent erosion while creating habitat similar to natural oyster communities found along shoreline areas throughout Tampa Bay. Click here to visit our webpage to learn more about reef balls.

Oyster Reef Ball Construction

Weekday mornings from 9 AM - Noon

Join us at the Tampa Bay Watch Marine Education Center, 3000 Pinellas Bayway South in Tierra Verde to help build oyster reef balls!
This task involves pouring marine-friendly concrete into a fiberglass mold to create oyster reef balls, then taking apart the molds when dry. The reef balls will be installed at a future date to stabilize shorelines and prevent erosion while creating habitat similar to natural oyster communities found along shoreline areas throughout Tampa Bay. 

Click here to visit our webpage to learn more about reef balls. 

Click your preferred date(s) to register:
image: discovery center at dawn

Volunteer at the Discovery Center

Are you interested in helping the Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Center inspire visitors to become better stewards of Tampa Bay through conversation and education? Our Discovery Center on the St. Pete Pier is currently recruiting volunteers ages 16 and over to assist with outreach, education, and boat-based eco-tours. Please send an email to tbwdcfrontdesk@tampabaywatch.org and tell us a little bit about your interests and availability.

Be the face of Tampa Bay Watch!

Tampa Bay Watch regularly seeks outreach volunteers to represent our organization at community events such as MarineQuest and Ribfest. As an outreach volunteer, you’ll talk to people who come up to our display to find out more about our mission, our restoration projects, youth education, and volunteer and membership opportunities. Click here to find out more about helping out as an outreach volunteer.

Contact Rachel Arndt with questions about volunteering at Tampa Bay Watch: