Welcome to

the Homosassa RiverRestoration Project

Restore a River?  Yes.

Faced with 90% loss of native vegetation and invaded by Lyngbya algae, the project’s goal is to substantially increase both water clarity and quality.

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Homosassa River Home
River restore process
Anhinga dries wings

A River in Decline

For many years, the amount of organic material at the bottom of the river has been accumulating,…


Residential Fertilizer & Groundwater Nitrates

How we use water and fertilizer inland directly impacts the quality of our rivers. Learn why…


florida springs healthy

What Makes a Healthy Spring?

Learn how to understand what makes a healthy spring. Check out the interactive map.


Homosassa River Map NOAA 1977

Homosassa Community

Understand how the Homosassa community is coming together to help restore the river. Homosassa…


Heron in flight

Great Blue Heron

The Great Blue Heron is America's largest Heron. This highly adaptable bird lives in shoreline…


eelgrass cultivation

Where we get our grass

We're planting acres of new grasses at the bottom of the river. We don't steal them from one place…


Welcome to Homosassa

old homosassaA Riverside Community

Homosassa is a riverside community.Situated on the west coast of Florida, it’s about an hour’s drive north of Tampa International Airport. The area served as a home to native American populations as far back as 10,000 years ago. The name Homosassa comes from a Seminole Indian name meaning either “river of fishes” or “pepper ridge”. The area was settled by European descendants in only the last few hundred years. It’s a beautiful place, fed by a bountiful aquifer. Its First Magnitude Spring and river system merges the gently sloping land on-shore with the gently sloping Gulf of Mexico off-shore. Our goal is to restore this river.

Yulee sugar mill ruinsCompelling History

Our gentle and water rich countryside attracts tourists and has supported agricultural interests.  The remnants of our heavy agricultural past dot our landscape. These iconic structures help us understand the changes we’ve seen.

Fish MarketThe focus on becoming a fishing village and then a water focused small community is also apparent. Our buildings and our waterside businesses relate that story. A Homosassa visitor soon notices that much of our community links to the River and the Gulf are out in the open. Marinas are plentiful. Boats and bait shops, tour guides, and fishing supplies are common. We’re all about the water. We are a working yet playful community hosting festivals celebrating seafood and our riverside roots.

Waterside Lifestyle

That long sloping grade, from the shore into the Gulf of Mexico, means we’re not the place for beaches. Beaches require thousands of years of waves pounding on the shore, to reduce the rocks and shells to sand. Here, the sandy bottom of the gulf is more a home to barrier islands. That island seascape offers vegetation a place to live. It in turn holds those islands together, making a home for bait fish, crabs, and larger fishing predators like Red Drum, Snook, and Salt Water Trout.

man with parrot Homosassa River RestorationWhat does it mean to live in such close contact with the water? It means we spend our days in touch with the tides. We think of meeting our friends along the river. Nature and water are part of our everyday lifestyle.

Saving a River

It’s exactly because our community is so tied to the water, that we’re so ready to do our part.

Frank Kapocsi, President of Homosassa River Alliance, remembers “the Homosassa River, in the past,  was a pristine waterway,  pollution free . Its crystal clear waters supported a natural environment of native aquatic grass and vegetation, sustaining an abundance of both fresh and saltwater fish. During the spawning season both fresh water bass and bream beds were visible along the river banks. Mullet were in such abundance that one strike of a fishermen’s net would fill his skiff. During the winter months fish of all varieties from the Gulf would seek refuge in the warm waters of the spring runs. The winter season would also see the arrival of thousands of waterfowl rafting up in the bays of the river enjoying the clean water and the never ending supply of resources to maintain themselves until returning north. The river and its waterways were a sportsmen’s paradise, where a person could drop a quarter into the river and when it settled on the bottom you could still tell it was a quarter.”

HRRP will act to restore the Homosassa River and to make it better (learn more about us here). Our strong concern is for our waters, the creatures who live here, and the river’s ongoing sustainability. We’re working to get back to a vibrant diverse ecosystem. We know we can make the critical changes. This knowledge gives us the motivation to restore our once pristine river to its former glory.  We hope you’ll join with us and make a donation, however small, to help in this effort.