Ronnie Gist with the Maryland Industrial Partnerships grant program (MIPS) is about to enjoy a fresh oyster from our lease in St. George Creek. We were awarded a grant through this program to research alternative “in-water” setting methods compared to traditional land-based setting systems.
In September I had an opportunity to do some work renovating condos on Siesta Key in Florida. Swimming and laying on the beach after work, not bad. Every restaurant offered oysters but I didn’t see any Chesapeake’s on the menus… yet.
Water visibility improves in the fall and winter. It was time to enjoy some of the hard work and checkout the lease bottom snorkel style. Oyster reefs are the equivalent to coral reefs in the Chesapeake Bay. Not quite the Caribbean clarity but maybe in time. Oysters improve water quality so I can only hope that as we and other growers put more oysters in the water, visibility will improve. Some of the shell piles look great!
This summer we produced over 1 million oyster seed at our indoor hatchery facility. To produce oyster seed, larvae is set on small pieces of oyster shell resulting in individual oysters referred to as singlets rather than the clusters of oysters that are produced from setting larvae on whole shells.
We set up a remote setting tank for the St. Mary’s River Watershed Association along the waterfront at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. Using our system SMRWA was able to set over 3 million spat for restoration.