Sunday, February 22, 2015

Camp Bayou's Spring Open House- Happy Pi Day- 3/14/15!

Join Camp Bayou volunteers for their Spring Open House with a Pi Day theme!
Saturday, March 14, 2015, 9am-1pm.
This year, the Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center Open House will be all about circles, cycles, spiral, spheres and other topics related to pi - 3.141592653...
Ongoing demonstrations and hands-on activities will show visitors how nature and pi coincide.
The morning activities include:
9am: Activity tables open
9:26:53am: Celebrate this special Pi Day moment with Bubbles!
10am: GPS tortoise burrow scavenger hunt with Daniel
10:30am: Speaker- Joann from C.A.R.E.
11am: Storytime in the Round
11:30am: Brunch $5 fundraiser- circle foods: pancakes and more!
12pm: Loop trail hike with Becki or canoe around the oxbow (special $10 rental per canoe)
12:30pm: Final door prize drawing
Other organizations joining in the morning activities include:
C.A.R.E, Ruskin Pack 662, Paleo Preserve Fossil Museum, Ruskin Library, Little Manatee River State Park, Tampa Bay Conservation Society, League of Environmental Educators in Florida (LEEF) and Florida Master Naturalists. Camp Bayou's parent non-profit, BOLD (Bayou Outdoor Learning and Discovery, Inc.) will present their annual report.
Door prizes will be awarded every half hour including books, water testing kits and t-shirt/hat, among other possibilities. Door prize tickets are free and available at the Camp Bayou display table to all who sign up for our e-newsletter. A free tomato plant will also be given to the first 50 people who sign up.

Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center is neither a campground nor a summer camp. It was an RV park before the County's ELAP program purchased the land but it is now open for day use only, open to the general public. Through volunteers, donations, supporters and grants, the managing non-profit- B.O.L.D. - offers pre-scheduled programs to schools, youth groups, adult groups and families. Monthly canoe tours are now available by reservation only. Check the online calendar for trip dates. The Center is open from Thursday- Saturday from 9am-2pm for passive recreational pursuits such as wildlife watching, nature photography and trail walks.  General admission is still FREE.
The Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center is a public- private partnership between Bayou Outdoor Learning and Discovery, Inc. (B.O.L.D.), and Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation. Camp Bayou is located 3 miles south of SR674 at the end of 24th St SE in Ruskin. Check out the Camp Bayou Facebook page and for more information visit the webpage at or call 813-641-8545.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

On the Trail...

This armadillo was searching for food along the fence line outside Camp Bayou. He was so focused on food that he didn't notice me just 6 feet away- that is until I just couldn't hold the squat anymore and I had to stand up. It was too quick and the armadillo scurried off into the woods inside the fence.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Winter e-newsletter now available

Although it is nearly 3 weeks late, the winter 2014 issue of the Camp Bayou Buzzzz! is finally complete and available on our website. We use a cloud site for all our e-newsletters, as well as trail maps, brochures, volunteer applications and other often accessed items.

Fallen tree removed from trail this Fall
You can access the Winter issue directly by clicking here or check out all the sharable items in our Box.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

On the Trail 2015

This week the star of the trail is 'Innocence', Houstonia procumbens .

Every winter Innocence appears on the trails. It likes the lack of competition, for light as well as space. The microhabitat provides just enough moisture and plenty of sun but not too much heat. The four-petaled flowers usually dot the trail here and there and it has always been a surprise, almost a reward, to spot a clump.

This year they are almost everywhere you look! Along the Tortoise Trail in the uplands as well as the Wetland Walk. I felt like I was playing hopscotch while trying to avoid stepping on them. Walking the trails makes me feel rejuvenated, bringing out the child in me (although admittedly, that isn't hard to do :o)

A short video shows how far it has spread: 

Nature Notes Note: 
This blog has been sadly neglected for some time now. Every January, I make a resolution to make a post, at least weekly, and at some point it gets lost during the year. At the risk of being labeled insane (doing the same thing but expecting a different result), I will try once again to at least post a picture each week.