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Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center

Mission: To preserve a sample of Florida's original habitats in the Little Manatee River Watershed

4202 24th St. SE
Ruskin, FL 33570
Tel: 813 641-8545   Fax: 813 641-3525

Trails open Thursday-Saturday 8am-6pm

Camp Bayou is a 160 acre nature preserve located in the middle of the Little Manatee River system and proximate to the Cockroach Bay Aquatic Preserve and Tampa Bay. Camp Bayou is financially supported thorough local grants, donations, membership, and dedicated volunteers.

Camp Bayou is a partnership between the Ruskin Community Development Foundation and Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation.

View a video about Camp Bayou

Camp Bayou's Spring Open House will be held on Saturday, April 21 from 8am-2pm.
Camp Bayou's Director, Dolly Cummings, says, "These semi-annual events showcase the opportunities at Camp Bayou while also providing information to help everyone get better acquainted and more comfortable with the natural environments we find right in our backyards."
Scheduled activities include:
8am: Great American Cleanup begins

9 am: Birding Walk – Late for most birders, but try to locate our resident birds during a leisurely walk. 
10 am:  Native Plants – Learn about native plants for the home landscape and take home a plant for your yard.

11 am: Butterfly walk– Visit the members of the Eagle Audubon Society of Sun City Center in their “Butterfly Habitat” gazebo.
Noon: Spring Brunch- Buffet fundraiser, vegetarian items available. $10/person. 
1 pm:  Wetland Walk-n-Wade – Take a walk through the wetlands to the river to see what critters we can net.
The following opportunities will also be available:
- Book Signing with Frank Garcia
- Fossil Museum open
- Fossil pit dig (for small fee)
- Nature Center open
- HomeOwner's Helpline display
- 3 trails through varied habitats
- Guided walks every hour
- Canoe launch open
- Friends of Ucita- native culture display
- Eagle Scout’s (BS troop 11) Native Camp
- Native plants for sale
- Cart tours every half hour beginning at 9:30 am.

The Camp Bayou Spring Open House is a celebration of National Environmental Education Week ( and National Wildlife Week (, as well as Earth Day (
REMINDER: Camp Bayou will be coordinating a 'Procession of the Species' during the Ruskin Heritage Street Fest. If you are interested in creating a 'critter' out of recycled and other materials, using a variety of craft techniques, please plan on attending one of three workshops planned: South Shore Regional Library on Tuesday, April 24 and Thursday, April 26, starting at 9am in the Crawford Art Education studio; and at Camp Bayou on Saturday, April 28 in the Classroom at 9am. We will all meet at the Ruskin Street Fest on Friday evening, May 4 to begin our 'Procession of the Species'. For more information about these free workshops or the procession, or to register, contact Dolly at or call 813-641-8545. To get an idea of what it's all about or to look at the original event held in WA., visit .
Visit the Camp Bayou Calendar to find updates on these and more events at . Don't forget the weekly guided walks start at 10:30am each Saturday that continue through April 2007. For information, directions or to pre-register, call Camp Bayou at 813-641-8545.
Camp Bayou is a partnership between the Ruskin Community Development Foundation, Inc. and Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation. Camp Bayou is located 3 miles south of SR 674 at the end of 24th St SE in Ruskin. Camp Bayou is open regularly from 9am-2pm, Thursday- Saturday (except holidays), Sundays through May. For more information on Camp Bayou, please visit the website at .

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