Sarasota Bay Watch announced that nearly 400 participants came together at its annual fundraiser—called "Scallopalooza, It's Clamtastic!"—to support and raise funds to release 1 million clams into Sarasota-Manatee waters. The organization has already released 875,000 clams; it also conducts marine debris cleanups above and below the water, removing trash that endangers marine animals and shoreline birds, as well as removing nets that damage sensitive habitat and trap fish indefinitely. Data is collected to determine hotspots and areas for more frequent cleaning. While shoal islands are being cleaned, invasive plants are also being removed and native plants are planted.
Clams naturally filter excess nutrients that contribute to red tide blooms and unclear water and inhibit sea grass growth—a necessary food source for local marine mammals. Depending on its size, a clam can filter 6-20 gallons of water per day.