The Manatee Observation and Education Center (MOEC) and Treasure Coast Manatee Foundation (TCMF) have expanded a seagrass restoration project that will now bring one acre of seagrass to Moore’s Creek in Spring 2022. The Manatee Foundation is raising $65,000 and donations to support this important project should be directed to www.GoFundMe.com/f/SaveTheSeagrass.
After receiving tremendous support and praise for the initial pilot project announced in July 2021, MOEC and TCMF have expanded the project to include a half-mile of Moore’s Creek, bringing one acre of freshwater and saltwater grasses to the Indian River Lagoon in Downtown Fort Pierce. The new, expanded restoration area will connect to an existing freshwater grass restoration project that is led by St. Lucie County, Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, and Sea & Shoreline, Inc, at 7th Street, and extend east to the Manatee Center, across from the MOEC manatee mural, at 480 N Indian River Drive, Fort Pierce, FL.
The Florida manatee population is in peril. A record-breaking 957 manatees were found deceased so far in 2021, many sick or starving from lack of natural food sources in the Indian River Lagoon. Manatees eat as much as 120 pounds, or 10% of their body weight, in aquatic vegetation every single day.
MOEC is a not-for-profit environmental learning center, located in downtown Fort Pierce, at the basin of Moore’s Creek and the Indian River Lagoon. Now in its 25th year, the mission of MOEC is to promote understanding and responsible actions for the protection of the Treasure Coast’s fragile ecosystem and its inhabitants. Innovative exhibits and displays allow for an up-close look at some of the unique and amazing creatures found along the Treasure Coast, as well as an opportunity to see the threatened Florida manatee in its native habitat. To volunteer or support the Center’s continued work, please visit the Manatee Center at 480 North Indian River Drive, Fort Pierce, or call 772-429-6266 to learn more.