A volunteer cleans up East Beach at Fort De Soto Park.
TIERRA VERDE – Tampa Bay Watch will host its annual Mid-Summer Coastal Cleanup after the Fourth of July holiday weekend on Saturday, July 9, 9 a.m. to noon.
Volunteers are needed for seven sites throughout the bay. Cleanup sites will include Fort De Soto Park, Cunningham Key, Skyway Fishing Pier, Weedon Island, Coffee Pot Bayou, Palonis Park and Coquina Beach. This event is family-friendly and open to all ages. Volunteers are welcome to bring their own kayak or canoe to participate in the water-based cleanup at Fort De Soto, Tierra Verde and the Skyway. The Coffee Pot Bayou cleanup is only for canoes and kayaks and participants must provide their own vessel. Visit tampabaywatch.org to get more information and to register for the event.
Tampa Bay Watch sees coastal cleanups as an important way to help remove human-generated trash as well as marine debris that float onto the shorelines from Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Cleanups also protect wildlife from unnecessary injury or death.
“Coastal cleanups are a great way to locally deal with an international problem,” said Martha Gruber in a press release. Gruber is an environmental scientist at Tampa Bay Watch. Since 2001, more than 60,000 pounds of debris have been collected through our cleanups, including items like Styrofoam cups, construction debris, car batteries, countless cigarette butts, party balloons and plastic bags.
Tampa Bay Watch is a nonprofit 501(c)3 stewardship program dedicated exclusively to the charitable and scientific purpose of protecting and restoring the marine and wetland environments of the Tampa Bay estuary, encompassing over 400 square miles of open water and 2,300 square miles of highly-developed watershed. Tampa Bay Watch involves more than 10,000 youth and adult volunteers each year in hands on habitat restoration projects.