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Cleanup to save the Caloosahatchee

Photo courtesy of Felicia Nudo.

Billy Creek was established – and named after the Seminole chief Billy Bowlegs, who was coerced into surrendering there by the United States forces in the year 1858.

Since then, it has become a very important part of Lee County, and remains a key part of our local environment today.

The scenic Billy’s Creek contains a variety of wildlife and huge amounts of important mangrove vegetation which plays a very important role in water filtration in Lee County.

Combined efforts to boost the water quality from various government agencies helped with the creation of the Billy Creek Filter Marsh and neighboring nature park.

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The artificially-created filter marshes at this preserve serve as a natural cleansing system for Billy’s Creek, before it continues downstream into the Caloosahatchee River.

Billy’s Creek and the Caloosahatchee River are two important waterways that feed into the restoration and preservation of the Everglades, and, for this reason, FGCU students and Riverwatch are once again coming together to keep the waterways clean.

FGCU and FSW students spend their morning volunteering to remove trash from Billy’s Creek. (Photo courtesy of Felicia Nudo)

On Nov. 4, both partners will be hosting a cleanup of Billy’s Creek from 9:00 a.m. to noon at 2937 Palm Beach Blvd.

The clean-up, which is being organized by fellow FGCU student, Felicia Nudo, will allow students and volunteers to earn service learning hours by cleaning up Billy’s Creek.

In the process, those students will be protecting the endangered Caloosahatchee River, ensuring that everyone in Lee County maintains good water quality.

In the past, volunteers were able to remove about 330 pounds of litter and waste from Billy’s Creek – a feat that shows the great impact that people can do through service and dedication.

This is also a great opportunity for people to gain  knowledge and hands-on experience with the filter marsh, its purpose and its environmental benefits.

Students who would like to help volunteer and earn service learning hours can contact Nudo at [email protected].

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