Oyster spat will be growing in a new upweller this summer on Norwood Avenue in Beach Haven, thanks to the efforts of Mike Davis, past MLT president, and MLT member Wes Heilman.
A ReClam the Bay upweller will give us the opportunity to raise oysters from spat to a size where they can be placed around Mordecai Island in bags that will begin to create a natural reef. Why oysters rather than clams? Oysters filter far more water than clams and they do not freeze when the bay is iced over. Over time, oysters will create a natural reef which will add to the “Living Shoreline,” which will help prevent further erosion on the island. The addition of these oysters will also help clean the bay waters around Liberty Channel.
Working on the upweller will provide valuable ecological educational opportunities for the younger members of the Little Egg Harbor Yacht Club, who will gain hands-on experience not only working with the unit, but also planting the one inch oysters around Mordecai.
The 5 gallon cylinders must be cleaned weekly and measurements taken and recorded on oyster growth. LEHYC captains and volunteers, guided by RCTB, will be responsible for maintaining the unit from June 1 to October 1.