|Recycle your oyster shells whenever possible for sustainable seafood|
The annual Boone Hall Oyster Festival is a serious good time. How good you ask? Try 80,000-pounds of succulant, salty bivalves worth of coastal living goodness. More importantly, the good folks of the Lowcountry are serious about putting the leftovers to good use by returning them to the estuary.
A $75,000 dollar grant from Guy Harvey to the South Carolina chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) in 2013 directed them to practice conservation that benefits both fish and fishermen. In this case, that translates into good news for future oyster production and for local anglers too!
Volunteers in the Topwater Action committee, under the supervision of Gary Keisler, arrived before the event began and worked all day to transfer the shell from oyster tables to portable metal bins. The S.C. Department of Natural Resources oversees the oyster recycling efforts. The metal bins are adorned with Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation stickers and CCA slogans that state Habitat Today Equals Fish Tomorrow.
Oysters play a role in the Lowcountry economy when smaller oyster roasts are executed countless times each winter in social settings. In the estuary, oysters filter the saltwater and improve water quality, while the oyster banks provide habitat for small fish and other life that use the inshore waters to mature.
|Shuckin' For The Cause is in the Spring 2014 edition|
Placing the shell back into the estuary is imperative because when oysters spawn their larvae are released into the water. After free swimming in the current they need to find a hard substrate, attach to it, and begin growing. If there isn’t enough shell out there, possibly from over harvesting, then oysters cannot stay sustainable. Keeping oysters as a viable source of sustainable seafood is a great reason to recycle them.
CCA will muster its volunteers again at a later date and load the shells into large john boats that serve as barges, in order to transport and offload the shell. Guy Harvey lottery proceeds will help to purchase a portion of the equipment needed for these oyster restoration efforts. The partnership between Guy Harvey and CCA to practice wise management of the Palmetto State’s marine resources will help to raise awareness how important oyster shell recycling is for everyone.
To view past blog entries from the 2014 Boone Hall Oyster Festival with more info on oyster recycling efforts click here.
To view past feature article in Guy Harvey Magazine click Kite Fishing or Dolphin Tagging.
To view past blog entries about Guy Harvey click S.C. Lottery or 2012 Memorial Day Visit or World Headquarters Visit.
To view past blog entries about sustainable seafood click Pink House / Savannah - Boathouse On Breech Inlet / Isle Of Palms - Circa 1886 / Charleston - Wine on the Water / SC Aquarium - Fish Restaurant / Charleston - Fresh On The Menu