An edition of: WaterAtlas.orgPresented By: Sarasota County, USF Water Institute

Water-Related News

Capt. Planet brings artificial reefs to waterfront businesses in Sarasota County

A Kansas environmental activist is committed to improving water quality, and he's doing it one dock at a time.

Garrett Stuart, better known as Capt. Planet, is an algae scientist and educator whose plan is to save Earth. Years ago, he visited the Florida Keys to snorkel and decided to stay and help with red tide research in 2018.

Now in Sarasota County, Stuart is installing artificial reefs at local waterfront businesses. An artificial reef is a manmade structure intentionally placed in waters to create a habitat for a variety of marine life.

Stuart said the reefs also help with red tide. Because they can filtrate so many gallons of water, the reefs purify water at restaurants and homes.

"It instantly acts as fish and crab habitat," he said. "It's universally proven to house about 300 fish, 200 crabs per year. These homes that live on the reef literally eat algae, so It's a win-win as far as we're giving fish habitat, and we're literally actively cleaning our waters with this."