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Monday July 28th 2014

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Bayou Tourists

Over the next couple of days, volunteers from Tourism Cares will be working to restore native vegetation along the shoreline in Bayview Park. The volunteers will be working in conjunction with the Florida Department of Environmental  Protection and its Project Greenshores program.

Restoring native vegetation along the shoreline at Bayou Texar helps to improve water quality by minimizing the effects of stormwater runoff. Oyster beds have also been placed in the bayou in an effort to filter the water.

It looks like the efforts may be improving the outlook for the bayou’s health. Recently, Pensacola City Councilman Larry B. Johnson saw two dolphins swimming in Bayou Texar at Bayview Park.

“I’ve never seen dolphins on Bayou Texar,” said Johnson, who has lived on the bayou since 1989.

Amy Baldwin, with the FDEP, also saw the pair of dolphins. The department’s ecorestoration manager said that the sighting was a good sign and may point to improved water quality.

This week’s restoration work will be done by Tourism Cares, a non-profit organization for tourism professionals.

“As anyone who has participated in our previous volunteer efforts knows, we are not all work and no play,” said Tourism Cares Executive Director Bruce Beckham in a statement.  “In addition to giving back to an industry from which we have all profited, our Tourism Cares projects provide plenty of opportunity to network and socialize with other members of the tourism industry.”