Cownose Cove Volunteers

Volunteer at Cownose Cove


Registration is now open for volunteer opportunities at our Cownose Cove exhibit at Tampa Electric's Manatee Viewing Center (MVC) in Apollo Beach! Cownose Cove is staffed by The Florida Aquarium’s team members seven days a week throughout the entire season that the MVC is open: November 1 through April 15.

Informational Sessions

Join us for an information session to learn more about volunteering at The Florida Aquarium's Cownose Cove exhibit located at Tampa Electric's Manatee Viewing Center in Apollo Beach.

October 10 | 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
October 13 | 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
October 17 | 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
October 24 | 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

The daily tasks of this position will include interacting with guests and other team members at the MVC, providing accurate information about the animals that call Cownose Cove home and those in the surrounding environment, as well as monitoring the health of the resident stingrays and the life support systems of the habitat.

Each day will be divided into two four-hour shifts: 9:30 AM - 1:30 PM and 1PM - 5 PM. Volunteers may register for both shifts on the same day. Volunteers will be outside for the duration of the four-hour shift.

Minimum Requirements

  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Able to commit at least one four-hour shift per week for the entire duration of the MVC’s season. Shifts are from 9:30AM – 1:30PM and 1:00 – 5:00PM, seven days a week; you may sign up for both shifts on the same day.
  • Able to commit to several training sessions during September and October, at the Aquarium in downtown Tampa and at the Manatee Viewing Center in Apollo Beach.
  • Have reliable transportation to and from the Manatee Viewing Center.
  • Able to be outside in a west central Florida climate.
  • Able to be on your feet for up to 4 hours at a time.
  • Able to communicate about the health of the animals and the status of the life support systems with a remote Husbandry contact (via phone or text).

If you have any questions about the position, or if you would like to apply for a shift assignment, please contact Rebecca Hughes, education volunteer coordinator at, (813) 367-4075 or complete the form below.

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