oyster

cbf.org

An oyster restoration project in the Little Choptank River is being cut back by about one fourth or a 118 acres of the original goal.

It will mean a reduction of around 19.5 million oysters which would filter over 1 billion liters of water per day.

The decision comes after boats ran aground on another oyster sanctuary and the rebuilding of some of the man-made reefs.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the environmentalists have hailed these projects which are part of a federal-state agreement for restoration of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

Don Rush

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Oyster restoration efforts are almost complete on one river in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. But officials warn that federal funding could be cut before the work is all done.

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation said in a press release that environmental groups and two congressmen will meet Friday to highlight progress along the Lafayette River in Norfolk. They also plan to talk about the need for funding to complete the job.

The Trump Administration has proposed eliminating Chesapeake Bay cleanup dollars.

Blue Crab, fotosearch.com

TANGIER, Va. (AP) - An unusual crab has been pulled from the Chesapeake Bay.

The blue crab has two oysters growing on either side of her head near her eyes. The crab is estimated to be about 2 years old and was found in a crab pot that belonged to the mayor of Tangier Island. The oysters are about six months old.

Don Rush

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) - A researcher at William & Mary says that "big, honkin' grandma oysters" could improve the Chesapeake Bay's oyster stock.

Geology Professor Rowan Lockwood says in a university press release that larger, older oysters produce more offspring. And some studies suggest they're more tolerant to disease. 

Chesapeake Bay Program website

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has approved a two-season moratorium on fishing for cownose rays in contests, pending a study by a state agency.

The Senate voted 46-0 on Monday night for the moratorium.

Legislation initially called for a ban. Animal rights organizations, including the Humane Society and the Save the Rays coalition, say the contests are inhumane and harmful to the environment.

Chesapeake Bay Foundation

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A new report finds water clarity in the Chesapeake Bay is the best it's been in decades, and native rockfish, oyster and blue crab populations are rebounding as the overall health of the nation's largest estuary improves.
 
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation's biennial State of the Bay report gave the estuary a C-minus grade, an improvement from a D-plus two years ago. It's the highest score since the first report in 1998.
 

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is touting the state's growing oyster business and declaring November Virginia Oyster Month.

McAuliffe's office said Wednesday that more than 135 million oysters were planted in Virginia in 2015, a 27 percent increase from the year before.

The governor said oyster tourism is increasing in Virginia, which boats eight distinct oyster growing regions.

Virginia started a state oyster trail last year to boost tourism.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The Virginia Department of Health has ordered the emergency closure of thousands of acres of shellfish harvesting waters to avoid potential contamination from Hurricane Matthew-related flooding and sewage spills "likely containing pathogenic bacteria and viruses."

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports  the closures are effective until the end of the month. An additional 80,000 acres of oyster grounds are in "restricted status," meaning harvesting is subject to rainfall and monitoring results because of potential pollution.

Don Rush

WASHINGTON (AP) - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has awarded $800,000 to Maryland to help restore the Chesapeake Bay's oyster population.

Sens. Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin announced the award in a news release Tuesday.

The award to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources will go to producing and planting 1.5 billion hatchery seeds in three years.

creative commons

The Army Corps of Engineers has proposed to ease the restrictions on oyster aquaculture.

The plan now open for public comment would make it easier for those applying for aquaculture permits and would eliminate size restrictions.

WBOC reports that some say this is a wave of the future.

But local watermen are expressing their concerns.

They fear this could open up the region for large companies to stake a claim on large portions of the Bay.

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