Tampa Bay Watch Marine and Education Center is located at 3000 Pinellas Bayway South in Tierra Verde and provides a valuable resource for leading habitat restoration and protection activities throughout the Bay area. Overseen by Tampa Bay Watch, a nonprofit launched in 1993, the Center serves as host for thousands of volunteers and individuals of all ages who visit the site with community groups, school or scout troop outings and others who take part in activities such as storm drain markings, coastal cleanups, salt marsh plantings, and oyster bar creation.
This weekend, volunteers can help the Gulfport community and its local marina by participating in VOG building, the creation of Vertical Oyster Gardens which can provide a valuable food source for foraging birds and fish and provide a home for crabs, shrimp and small fish. This weekend’s VOG building takes place Saturday, June 29 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Marine Center and involves stringing drilled oyster shells on a rope, which are then suspended from docks to create a hard surface on which young oysters can attach and grow. And since oysters are also natural water filters, cleaning up to 10 gallons of water an hour, more oyster gardens should mean cleaner Bay waters for everyone. VOGS created at this June meet-up will be installed later at Gulfport Marina.
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