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scheduled projects

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!

If you would like to volunteer with a group, please contact Rachel Arndt directly at rarndt@tampabaywatch.org

Upcoming events:

Adopt-a-Nursery Program

October 12, 9:30-11:00 AM

Tampa Bay Watch is expanding our Native Planting program with the development of community nurseries and the “adopt-a-nursery” volunteer service program to support our restoration priorities. The goal is for these nurseries to be built in public locations in partnership with our various restoration partners. These wetland nurseries will act as donor nurseries, providing plants for community plantings across the watershed.

Tampa Bay Watch has collaborated with Manatee County to build two wetland nurseries located at Geraldson’s Community Farm next to the Robinson Preserve in northwestern Bradenton. We are seeking the help of a few dedicated volunteers to help maintain the wetland plant nursery by performing salinity tests, removing weeds and algae, preparing plants for transplanting, and conducting routine maintenance. We are inviting potential volunteers to a training session on October 12 from 9:30 am to 11:00 am to be educated on the ecology of wetland ecosystems, the benefits of wetlands to coastal communities, and be trained to properly care for their adopted nurseries.

Adopt-a-Nursery volunteers should be willing and able to:
• Perform general gardening chores including pruning, planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting
• Work in hot weather
• Stoop and bend
• Identify plants or learn plant identification skills
• Lift 35+ lbs. (not necessary but a plus)
• Submit Nursery Care data sheets for any time spent maintaining or caring for the nursery(ies)

Please email Rachel Arndt at rarndt@tampabaywatch.org to sign up for the October 12 training event to get started.

Oyster Reef Ball Construction

October 3
October 12
October 17
October 26
October 30
9AM – 12 Noon
Tampa Bay Watch Marine Center, 3000 Pinellas Bayway South, Tierra Verde, FL 33715. 
Minimum age: 16 years old
Our most frequent volunteer project is building oyster reef balls which involves pouring marine-friendly concrete into a fiberglass mold and taking apart the molds that were previously poured. 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
Register to volunteer by clicking a date below:

Oyster Shell Project

October 5
October 6
9 AM – 12 PM
MacDill Air Force Base
Tampa Bay Watch is recruiting volunteers to create an oyster reef on the shoreline of MacDill Air Force Base. The deadline for volunteer registration is one week prior to the project to allow time for security clearance, so you’ll be pre-approved for entry. Your driver’s license information is required for MacDill to perform the clearance. The project involves shoveling fossilized shell into mesh bags, transporting the bags via boat and placing them on the shoreline to create a series of oyster bars. 
Register to volunteer by clicking your date preference:

Mono Clean-a-thon

October 11, 9 AM – 12PM
Tampa Bay Watch Marine Center, 3000 Pinellas Bayway South, Tierra Verde, FL 33715. 
Minimum age: 15 years old
Volunteers are needed to clean “mono” or fishing line which involves sorting through the used line to remove debris, then cutting out hooks and lures. The clean line will be contributed to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s statewide initiative for proper recycling and repurposing of used fishing line. Click here to read more about this important program

Oyster shell project to restore 2D Island

October 18
October 19
9 AM – 12 PM
The project meeting location is Williams Park boat ramp, 9425 US Hwy 41 S, Riverview, FL 33578
Minimum age: 15 years old
We’re recruiting volunteers to install an oyster shell bar which involves shoveling fossilized shell into mesh bags and transporting the bags via boat to lay on the shoreline of 2D Island. The goal of our efforts is to restore lost habitat by promoting new oyster growth, ultimately improving water quality and providing food sources and habitat for many species. Click here to read more about the project. Register to volunteer by clicking your date preference:

Volunteer for Evening for the Bay: The Reef Ball at Tampa Bay Watch in Tierra Verde 

We’re planning our largest fundraiser of the year and need helping hands to make it a success! Here are the available shifts:

  1. Fri 10/20, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM: Setting up the auction items 

  2. Sat 10/21, 9-12:30 or Sat 10/21, 12:30-4: Setting tables on the lawn, puting linens on the tables, placing centerpieces, and setting up signage 

  3. Sat 10/21, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM: Clearing salad plates to facilitate dinner service for Salt Block Catering. 

Email Rachel at rarndt@tampbaywatch.org to sign up. 

Adopt A Monotube

Help us keep fishing line out of Tampa Bay! 
Tampa Bay Watch partners with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) in their statewide initiative to recycle used fishing line through a network of monofilament collection tubes called “monotubes”. Monofilament or “mono”, is another term for the commonly used plastic fishing line which has great fishing utility, but takes over 600 years to break down. Improperly discarded line can end up in our local ecosystems and may result in wildlife entanglement, accidental hooks, and ingestion. Let’s keep fishing line out of our waterways!

Adoption involves checking your designated location once a month to empty its contents and clean/prep the collected line for recycling. We are asking that volunteers commit a minimum of one year for any chosen site. The clean line will be contributed to FWC’s statewide initiative for proper recycling and repurposing of used fishing line. Go to our webpage to learn more about our monofilament recycling program: https://tampabaywatch.org/marine-debris/fishing-line-recycling/.
Take action to combat marine debris and protect our wildlife by adopting monotubes at one of the locations listed below. 
Pinellas County: 
R.E. Olds Park Pier
107 Shore Dr. W. Oldsmar
1 monotube
Manatee County:
South Skyway Fishing Pier Volunteer to start in mid-September
Southwest side of Skyway Bridge (on small bridge before booth and on pier until bait shop) – **approximately 28 monotubes**

Ready to adopt? Fill out this form to request a site location. https://arcg.is/0izjXj

Be the face of Tampa Bay Watch!

Are you a people person? Be the face of Tampa Bay Watch by becoming an outreach volunteer! We regularly seek volunteers to represent our organization at community events, corporate fairs, and concerts with a goal to increase awareness of our mission. As an outreach volunteer, you’ll talk to people who approach our display to learn all about us and encourage them to sign up to receive the Tampa Bay Watch weekly newsletter. We’ll provide you with our display and handouts to effectively discuss programs. Volunteers are responsible for transporting the display and materials to and from Tampa Bay Watch. Email Rachel at rarndt@tampabaywatch.org if you’re interested in representing us at community events.

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.

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