Established in 1905 by President Teddy Roosevelt, Passage Key's purpose is to preserve nesting colonies of native sea and wading birds.
Originally a 60 acre mangrove island that featured a fresh water lake, Passage Key was almost entirely destroyed by a hurricane in 1921. It is now a low lying sandbar that fluctuates in size from one to 30 acres.. Due to its importance as one of the last undeveloped barrier islands in Tampa Bay, it is closed to public use.
Egmont Key NWR is disappearing at a rapid rate due to erosion from storm related high tides, high wind events, boat wakes, and sea level rise. If no steps are taken to prevent erosion, this important island will disappear into Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico forever. Help us Save Egmont Key!