The Calusa Waterkeeper Board of Directors is pleased to announce Captain Cody Pierce as the new Calusa Waterkeeper
A Lee County native & lifelong outdoorsman, Codty Pierce grew up fishing local waters and observing the hydrology and environments of Pine Island Sound, Charlotte Harbor and Estero Bay. Pierce turned his passion for the environment into a profession, founding his own successful fishing guide and charter business in 2016.
"I am grateful for this opportunity to share my knowledge and passion for Southwest Florida's environment and history. It's exciting to be able to give back to this place I love, and to be working to improve our environment, educate the public and strive for better environmental standard for our rich biodiverse coastal community."
Please join us at the Riverside Community Center on Sunday, April 2nd for an inspiring afternoon that benefits the mission of Calusa Waterkeeper.
- Silent Auction
- Strolling buffet and drinks
- Television host and pro-angler, Captain C.A. Richardson
- Honor retired Waterkeeper, John Cassani
Welcome our new Waterkeeper, Codty Pierce
We invite you to purchase tickets, become an event sponsor, register to bid on our silent auction items, purchase a 50/50 Raffle Ticket, or cast your vote for your favorite SW Florida waterway. You can even purchase an advertisement in our event program to showcase your business or send a personalized message. All proceeds benefit Calusa Waterkeeper's mission and our water and air monitoring programs.
Two New Projects Launching
Vertical Oyster Gardens
The urgency of restoring our water quality in Southwest Florida is well documented and was exacerbated greatly by Hurricane Ian. One of the best nature-based solutions is to create new oyster reefs in our estuary, and let them go to work for us!
- Oysters create habitat for fish, crabs, shrimp and more.
- Oysters create a place for mangroves to take root and protect our shorelines
- Oysters are food for wildlife, including fish, birds, crabs and other animals
- Each oyster can filter 50 gallons of water per day – helping to clean our waters!
Vertical oyster gardens (VOGs) are made of recycled oyster shell from local restaurants, and suspended from docks to create surfaces for juvenile oysters to attach and develop.
Juvenile Tarpon Habitat Initiative
Calusa Waterkeeper is collaborating on the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust’s Juvenile Tarpon Habitat Initiative and Mapping Project and we are currently seeking volunteer input to identify habitat.
Juvenile tarpon depend on mangrove backwater wetlands and creeks as nurseries. Without such habitats, few juveniles would survive to become adults. The backwaters of the Caloosahatchee River, Charlotte Harbor and Estero Bay provide estuarine environments for one of the most prolific tarpon fisheries in the world.
2 Simple Steps:
Go fishing! Or, look for juvenile tarpon “rolling” up to the surface of the water to gulp air.
Fill out a brief survey to help identify juvenile tarpon habitat worth protecting.
Attention: Volunteer Rangers
Quarterly Ranger Meeting
Fort Myers Regional Library
Saturday, March 11, 10 am - 12 pm
We have ambitious goals for 2023 and invite you to learn more about our volunteer Ranger program and how you can get involved in testing and monitoring with Calusa Waterkeeper.
- Monitor, test, and report on the conditions of our waters through our FIB sampling
- Expand our Aerosol Detector for Algal Monitoring (ADAM) project by testing at more sites around the watershed
- Launch in-house testing, allowing us to get results to the public faster
Build collaborative partnerships with other like-minded organizations
Researchers Measure Water Conditions that Lead to Red Tide
Researchers from FGCU and the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation take water samples from depths of 45 feet in the Gulf of Mexico to right off the shore of Sanibel and in between to better understand our water quality issues. Learn More
Fecal Bacteria Counts High in Many Protected Rivers & Creeks
Some tributaries flowing into the Caloosahatchee River and Estero Bay are polluted with fecal coliform bacteria, with counts going well above the criteria used to determine whether or not a beach is safe for swimming. Continue Reading
Experts Warn of Contaminated Water at Lee County Beaches
Southwest Florida water experts are warning beachgoers, boaters, and the like – go in at your own risk. Calusa Waterkeeper and the Department of Health samplings show how even at beaches like Lynn Hall Beach Park, bacteria is showing in high amounts. Get in the Know Before you Go.
Fecal Bacteria Sampling Results Released for Lee County
The latest bacteria sampling results include new locations like Bunche Beach, Hendry Creek, Mullock Creek, Spring Creek, and Estero River. Take a look at Pine Island; the results were very high in this round of sampling. See the Results
Cheers to our Water Warrior, John Cassani
John Cassani shaped and defined the role of Calusa Waterkeeper, creating an outsized role for a private citizen in a nonprofit agency aimed at protecting and saving the water from the demands of roughly a million people, and sometimes protecting those people from the water. Read More
Florida’s Growth Stymies Attempts to Restore Polluted Waters
Although Florida voters support water quality initiatives, they continue to elect officials who are unwilling to make meaningful policy changes to stop water pollution throughout the state & in our own local watershed including the Caloosahatchee. Read Full Op-Ed
CALUSA WATERKEEPER MISSION
To Protect and Restore the Caloosahatchee River from Lake Okeechobee to the Coastal Waters.
FOLLOW CALUSA WATERKEEPER
PO Box 1165
Fort Myers, FL 33902