The restoration database contains information about habitat projects that have occurred since the 1970s in the Tampa Bay watershed. Clicking a project icon on the map will bring up a popup with basic information about the project. The entire database may be downloaded to obtain information about all projects, or more detailed information about a particular project.
Disclaimer: Information and completeness vary by project, with more recent projects often containing more detailed information. Please be aware that the current database is the best approximation of habitat protection and restoration projects, but may contain errors. Bay Area scientists and resource managers will continue to update this database with new projects and refine the existing entries.
Florida's population has increased steadily since the 1950s, with most of this growth occurring along Florida's coasts, resulting in a significant loss of natural landscapes. To compensate, public and public-private partnerships have funded property purchases for habitat protection and restoration. The Tampa Bay Estuary Program works with a variety of governmental and non-governmental partners to enhance, establish, and protect valuable habitats. These projects often bring together scientists and community volunteers to effectively manage and restore properties.
Functional habitats containing native species are vital for the health and viability of waterbodies and the many organisms that live in and around the water. Native vegetation, including grasses, shrubs, and trees, serves many purposes such as:
Humans also benefit from healthy habitats for recreation and other activities, including wildlife viewing.
Tampa Bay supports a mosaic of habitats, including estuarine wetlands, freshwater wetlands, upland forests, seagrass beds, and submerged hard bottom. A key goal of the Tampa Bay Estuary Program is restoring habitats in their historic ratios. This means that certain habitats that have been lost in proportionally larger amounts, such as salt barrens, may be a higher priority for restoration and protection. Both aquatic and terrestrial species occur in the watershed and some species use various habitats at different stages of their life; for example, larval fish utilize the freshwater portions of tidal creeks before venturing into saltier bay water as adults. For these reasons, it is important to provide an appropriate amount of many habitat types.