The Reclamation Project – You Can Join!

All you need to change the world is time, effort, and caring. In other words, you need volunteers. On Saturday, April 7th, The Reclamation Project, Miami Science Museum’s eco-art based restoration project, completed the first phase of restoration of the headwaters of the Oleta River. Over 70 volunteers planted more than 400 native plants and shrubs along the freshwater section of the river at Highland Oaks County Park in northeast Miami-Dade County. The Oleta River is one of South Florida’s most important rivers, and Highland Oaks is home to the vast wetland system that forms this important waterway. Why is it so important? This waterway not only supports a wide diversity of native habitats, it is also an important part of the ecology and history of South Florida. Used regularly by Tequesta Indians, it serves as the only fresh water tributary to Biscayne Bay that has not been altered by flood control systems. This means it flows naturally and unimpeded from the source to the sea. With the habitats restored, the Highland Oaks region will provide the low salinity environment necessary for commercial and recreational fisheries, and will also provide a critical nesting and foraging area for native birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals. Looking at the pictures below, you can imagine all of the plants and animals that will really appreciate this effort to restore their home.

Calling all volunteers! Phase II of the restoration at Highland Oaks County Park will take place on Saturday April 21st. The Museum invites you to volunteer your time to this important restoration activity. Please contact Danielle Romero at dromero@miamisci.org for more information.

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