Eight miniature artificial reefs will be placed at Port Sanibel Marina Friday, June 7, as part of Ocean Habitat's Thousand Reef Challenge. Photo provided
Eight miniature artificial reefs will be placed at Port Sanibel Marina Friday, June 7, as part of Ocean Habitat's Thousand Reef Challenge. Photo provided

FORT MYERS – Eight miniature reefs will be placed in the water Friday, June 7, at Port Sanibel Marina, located at the intersection of McGregor Boulevard and Port Comfort Road, to commemorate World Oceans Day on June 8. Its part of Ocean Habitat’s Thousand Reef Challenge, an effort to rebuild Florida’s living coastline with the installation of artificial reefs.

Mini Reefs are 24-inches-by-36-inches and support more than 500 fish and crustaceans per year, hold six to 10 large fish all year, hold 20 to 30 panfish, and filter between 25,000 and 35,000 gallons of water per day. This helps improve the marine environment and improves the water quality as the animals on the Mini Reef™ remove plankton from the water.

Ultimately, the Mini Reef develops a community of fish, including grouper, snapper and barracuda, as well as stone crab, shrimp and spiny lobster, in and around it. The Mini Reef is alligator-proof and lasts for ten-plus years.

Royal Shell and Royal Shell Port Sanibel Marina are sponsoring the event, which will include raffle and door prizes, refreshments, Mini Reef education and viewing, as well as Mini Reef donation acceptance for Ocean Habitats. “We are proud to rally behind the Thousand Reef Challenge,” said President and Managing Broker Michael Polly.

As a real estate company, Royal Shell handles an array of properties, many of which are surrounded by bodies of water that further enhance the properties’ beauty and make for quality waterfront living,” he said. “Before we proceed, we must make it our business to protect our coastline with as much passion as we have for real estate.”

Ocean Habitats’ Thousand Reef Challenge kicked off last month on Fort Myers Beach. Throughout the summer, the environmental nonprofit will continue to look for sponsors to fund the installation of the remaining Mini Reefs in local waters. For more information, call 1-800-674-2593 or visit OceanHabitatsInc.com.