Weedon Island Preserve, at approximately 3,700 acres (map), is an ecological jewel within an urban landscape on the shores of Old Tampa Bay. This coastal system, comprised of aquatic and upland ecosystems, is home to numerous species of native plants and animals, an educational facility and a rich cultural history. Today, the preserve protects this wide diversity of natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. The preserve serves as a natural floodplain, which:
- protects nearby development from flooding and coastal erosion by reducing storm surge,
- provides valuable habitats for many kinds of animals including oysters, stingrays and even small sharks,
- offers an array of recreational and educational opportunities, such as paddling, hiking, and bird watching
Weedon Island Preserve is a well-known birding and fishing site. Although shell fishing is prohibited in all of Tampa Bay for health reasons, the preserve's fishing pier and outlying oyster bars are ideal sites for catching sea trout, snook and sheepshead. State of Florida regulations governing saltwater fishing apply. Commercial fishing is prohibited. Two self-guided paddling trails allow for exploration of the preserve's islands and waterways. Over 4.7 miles of boardwalks and trails offer visitors an opportunity to enjoy and experience natural Florida.
Weedon Island Preserve remains one of Florida 's most important natural and cultural resources. Its proper management remains the priority of Pinellas County as caretaker of the preserve. The county is committed to restoring its natural communities while teaching the public about the interrelationships between people and the environment. Through the support of citizens and the Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners, Weedon Island Preserve remains "A Place to Remember."
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