The quest to return the Indian River Lagoon to days gone by has begun. Capt Blair Wiggins and the Addictive Fishing team reached out to Frank Gidus, project coordinator for CCA Florida and were encouraged when they found out about a clam restoration project that had been written and was in need of funding.
Kevin McCabe, Executive Producer of Addictive Fishing Television said, "Capt Blair Wiggins has always believed the estuaries around our home waters have not been the same since we were kids, back in the 80's, growing up on the Space Coast. Due to environmental influences, most of the clams have gone missing. Clams are filter feeders and they would help drastically with water quality issues."
In August, a meeting was set in Orlando and select key industry minds were invited from the CCA, FWC, ASA and the University of Florida. Dr. Todd Osborne from the Whitney Lab and Jeff Beal from FWC led the meeting and told the group about a project that had already been permitted but didn't get funding. The project would gather super clams from the local areas that have made it through the brown algae bloom, bring them back to the Whitney Lab in St. Augustine, spawn 2,000,000 clams, reintroduce them back into clam beds at 5 locations and study their successes.
The AF team left the meeting with one goal in mind and that was to get the ball rolling as quickly as possible. First thing's first, the fundraising account needed to be established, and AF partners Star Brite and Dick's Sporting Goods were the first to respond. Initial checks were cut by both companies, sent to Whitney Labs at the University of Florida, and they got started working on the website link needed to get this project funded.
We hope we can count on you to donate to the IRL Clam Restoration Project and put our World Class estuary back to the beauty it once was.