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    John Stevely

    Extension Agent

Manatee and Sarasota Counties Extension Agent

1303 17th Street West
Palmetto, FL 34221-5998
(941) 722-4524
FAX: (941) 721-6608
Read the Southwest Florida Sea Grant Extension Blog, The Marine Scene Plus!

John Stevely works in the rapidly developing Tampa and Sarasota Bay area. This region includes one of the largest estuarine systems in Florida. He conducts marine extension educational programs dealing with the issues of fisheries habitat loss, planning and management of artificial reefs program, estuarine water quality, fisheries and natural resource management. Due to his expertise in sponge biology and fisheries management he has also been involved in evaluating the recovery of the sponge resources in the Florida Bay region following a devastating sponge mortality. He works closely with recreational and commercial fishermen, boaters, resource managers, researchers, local governments and waterfront property owners.

Outreach Programs

  • Bimonthly newsletter “The Marine Scene” deals with Sea Grant activities, management issues, research projects, educational materials available, fishing and mangrove regulations, etc. Focused on Tampa and Sarasota Bay area.
  • Presentations to on a variety of subjects (estuarine ecology, artificial reefs, waterway management) to a wide spectrum of fishing, boating and environmental organizations. These are scheduled when requested.
  • Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival. Third weekend of February. Presentations on the history of coastal town and the commercial fishing industry that has shaped that history.
  • Bradenton Herald Fishing College. First weekend of February. Stop by the display for a chat. There is a Sea Grant exhibit and agent on hand most years.


  • Commercial sponge biology and fisheries management
  • Estuarine Ecology
  • Coastal Wetland Habitat Restoration
  • Marine and Fishery Resource Management
  • Artificial Reef Development


  • MS, Marine science, University of South Florida
  • BA, Biology, Gettysburg College, Gettysburg PA