Chesapeake  Bay  Oysters:   Population  Decline  
     

To:  Robert  Wittman,  Virginia  House  of  Representatives     Subcommittee  on  Fisheries,  Wildlife,  Oceans  and  Insular  Affairs       From:  Sarah  Schmitt                        

 

 

 

Table  of  Contents   Introduction ............................................................................................................................................................... 1   Historic  Downfalls  of  Commercial  Harvesting   Cultural  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster   Ecological  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster ........................................................................................................ 2   Economic  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster......................................................................................................... 3   Oyster  Diseases...................................................................................................................................................... 4   Stakeholders .............................................................................................................................................................. 5   Past  Policy  and  Current  Restoration  Efforts ........................................................................................... 6   Past  Policies  and  Initiatives   Chesapeake  2000  Agreement   Policy  Option  1:  Introduction  of  Non-­Native  Oysters......................................................................... 7   Positive  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option   Negative  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option ............................................................................................................ 8   Supporting  Stakeholders   Opposing  Stakeholders....................................................................................................................................... 9   Policy  Option  Implementation ......................................................................................................................10   Policy  Option  2:  Imposing  a  Bay-­wide  Harvest  Moratorium  on  Native  Oysters  in   Conjunction  with  a  Transitional  Program  for  Displaced  Oystermen   ....................................11   Positive  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option..................................................................................................... 11,12   Negative  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option ..........................................................................................................13   Supporting  Stakeholders   Opposing  Stakeholders.....................................................................................................................................14   Policy  Option  Implementation ......................................................................................................................14   Policy  Option  :  Streamlining  the  Permitting  Process  for  Private  Aquaculture  Firms  ..15   Positive  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option   Negative  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option ..........................................................................................................16   Supporting  Stakeholders .......................................................................................................................... 16,17   Opposing  Stakeholders.....................................................................................................................................17   Policy  Option  Implementation ............................................................................................................... 17,18   Works  Cited ....................................................................................................................................................... 19,20  

 

 

 

 

Introduction   The  ecological  health  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay  ecosystem  and  its  keystone  species,  the   Chesapeake  Bay  oyster  (C.  virginica),  has  been  in  decline  for  decades.1  Together,   oyster  diseases  and  the  commercial  harvesting  techniques  created  in  response  to   the  economically  valuable  oyster  market  have  contributed  to  the  decline  in  oyster   stock  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.2  In  turn,  commercial  landings  in  Maryland  and  Virginia   have  sharply  declined  over  the  past  century.  

3  

    As  demonstrated  by  the  graph,  only  1%  of  the  oyster  stock  present  in  the  late  1800’s   exists  in  the  Bay  today.  NOAA  and  the  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  have  designated   approximately  $7  million  for  the  next  fiscal  year  to  accelerate  oyster  restoration   efforts.4  The  main  purpose  of  this  proposal  is  to  suggest  the  most  feasible  policies  to   which  said  funding  should  be  appropriated.  Consequently,  the  oyster  population   stock  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  will  increase  to  a  level  that  would  support  sustainable   commercial  harvests  in  the  future,  renew  the  region’s  oyster-­‐based  cultural  identity,   and  allow  the  oyster  to  fulfill  its  keystone  ecological  role  in  the  Bay  ecosystem.                                                                                                                      
2010.  Print.  
2  A  Dwindling  Catch.  Dir.  Matt  Danzeco.  Perf.  Oystermen  Across  the  Bay.  Discovery  Channel,     1  Baker,  William.  2010  State  of  the  Bay.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  

2008.  Film.  
3  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.    

Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.   2010.  Print.  

4  Baker,  William.  2010  State  of  the  Bay.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  

 

1  

Historic  Downfalls  of  Commercial  Harvesting   According  to  a  recent  publication  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  Journal,  commercial   harvests  of  Bay  oysters  began  to  decline  steadily  following  the  development  of   commercial  “dredging”  in  the  1820’s  and  the  rising  popularity  of  “steam  canning”  in   the  1870’s.  Namely,  this  decline  is  attributable  to  the  expedited  rate  at  which   watermen  could  harvest  oysters  in  comparison  to  the  rate  of  harvest  achieved  by   the  traditional  hand  tong  method.  Commercial  dredging  is  also  threatening  to  the   physical  integrity  of  century  old  reefs,  as  the  equipment  is  known  to  both  break  off   shells  that  serve  as  the  reef  bottom  substrate  and  to  inadvertently  killing  oysters   that  were  too  small  to  harvest,  thereby  lessening  the  stock  for  future  harvests.5     Cultural  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster   The  publication  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  indicates  that  the  Eastern   oyster  was  once  so  plentiful  in  the  Bay  that  it  inspired  the  Algonquian  tribe  to  name   the  Bay  “great  shellfish  bay”  or  “Chesepiook”.  The  oyster  is  also  a  key  part  of  the  Bay   area  culture  because  of  its  role  as  a  valuable  food  resource  to  the  Native  American   tribes  and  early  European  settlers  that  developed  into  a  booming  export  commodity   in  the  1800’s.  The  rate  of  harvest  also  increased  at  this  time  due  to  the  efficiency   provided  by  the  new  and  popularized  “skipjack”  sailboats  that  are  to  this  day   symbolic  of  historic  Bay  culture.  This  vested  interest  in  oysters  by  settlers  in  the  Bay   region  led  the  Chesapeake  oyster  fishery  to  become  the  most  sizable  in  the  world   during  this  time  period  due  to  the  evolving  technology  that  was  becoming   increasingly  available.  Furthermore,  towns  such  as  Crisfield  and  Saint  Mary’s  on  the   Eastern  Shore  of  Maryland  came  to  be  and  flourished  on  the  premise  of  the  local   oyster  abundance.  The  Eastern  oyster  has  acted  as  a  symbol  of  economic  prosperity   and  rich  Bay  culture  ever  since.6     Ecological  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster   The  Chesapeake  Bay  Field  Guide  asserts  that  the  Chesapeake  Bay  Oyster,  known  as   Crassotrea  virginica,  can  be  found  in  shallow  areas  of  the  Bay,  from  8  feet  to  35  feet.   They  are  categorized  as  “bivalve  mollusks”,  which  can  be  found  in  all  areas  of  the   Chesapeake  Bay  estuary  regardless  of  the  range  of  saline  conditions  present  across   the  Bay.  Oysters  are  seeded  in  concentrated  benthic  areas,  and  attach  to  each  other   to  form  dense  reefs  that  serve  a  specific  ecological  niche,  a  refuge  for  other  bottom-­‐ dwelling  organisms  such  as  crabs.  They  are  considered  to  be  a  “keystone  species”   because  of  their  ability  to  filter  up  to  50  gallons  of  water  each  day;  in  this  process  of   nutrient  uptake  and  filtration,  the  Chesapeake  Bay  oyster  allows  for  reduced   sediment  suspension  and  thus  progressively  higher  water  quality.7  The  oyster  plays   a  vital  role  in  the  Bay’s  ecosystem.  Efforts  must  be  made  to  restore  the  native  oyster                                                                                                                  
5  Blankenship,  Karl.  "Chesapeake's  Oyster  Reefs  Have  Taken  a  Shellacking."  Chesapeake  Bay    

Journal  1  Jan.  2010:  n.  pag.  Chesapeake  Bay  Journal.  Web.  14  Sept.  2011.      
6  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative     7  Eastern

Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.   Oyster - Bay Field Guide - Chesapeake Bay Program. A Watershed Partnership. Chesapeake Bay Program, 2011.  

 

2  

population  or  to  replenish  it  through  other  means  in  order  for  the  ecological  state  of   the  Bay  to  be  on  the  rise  for  the  first  time  in  decades.       Economic  Value  of  the  Eastern  Oyster   The  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation  pamphlet  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake’s  Native  Oysters   dictates  that  the  harvesting  of  Chesapeake  Bay  oysters  is  paramount  to  the  Bay’s   economic  health.  In  fact,  the  Chesapeake  Bay  is  one  of  two  remaining  places  in  the   world  where  an  industry  based  upon  harvesting  wild  oysters  still  exists.  Historically,   the  peak  of  shellfish  harvesting  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  took  place  around  the  1880’s,   when  about  50,000  oystermen  made  a  living  off  of  the  120  million  pounds  (or  17   million  bushels)  of  oysters  that  were  harvested  each  year.  The  last  25  years  of  the   oyster  industry  has  been  marked  by  economic  plight,  as  oyster  harvests  have  fallen   by  90%  and  the  number  of  oystermen  have  seen  a  75%  decline.  By  2009,  only  about   1,000  citizens  of  Virginia  and  Maryland  combined  had  oyster  harvesting  licenses,  a   mere  2%  of  the  oystermen  count  in  the  late  19th  century.  Even  more  striking  is  that   many  of  said  license-­‐holders  are  inactive  today  because  of  the  declining  oysters   available  to  harvest.  Oyster  decline  leading  to  the  destruction  of  the  Bay’s  fishing   community  is  also  evidenced  through  the  disappearance  of  oyster  shucking  houses   that  were  once  commonplace  across  the  Bay.  In  1974,  136  shucking  houses  served   as  a  rich  source  of  jobs  to  watermen  in  the  Bay  area.  Today,  less  than  ten  remain.8      

                                                                                                                 
8  Chesapeake

9  

Bay Foundation, On the Brink: Chesapeake's Native Oysters. 2010.

9  Chesapeake Bay Foundation, On the Brink: Chesapeake's Native Oysters. 2010.  

  3  

 

Oyster  Diseases     In  concurrence  with  the  2010  State  of  the  Bay  report,  the  more  recent  decline  in   oyster  stock  population  is  partially  attributable  to  the  oyster  diseases  Dermo  and   MSX.  Both  diseases  are  caused  by  protozoan  parasites  first  detected  in  the  Bay  in   1949.  While  these  diseases  are  fatal  to  Eastern  oysters,  they  are  harmless  to   humans.10       Dermo  is  contracted  amongst  Eastern  oysters  as  they  filter  water  for  food.   Infected  oysters  experience  weakening  of  the  muscle  that  opens  and  closes   the  shell,  and  eventually  die  from  starvation.  The  disease  is  so  prevalent   because  diseased  oysters  have  the  potential  to  spread  the  parasite  across  a   reef  by  releasing  the  parasites  into  the  water  after  death.11  More  saline   waters  allow  for  greater  spread  of  the  disease.12  This  infection  poses  a  threat   to  market-­‐size,  adult  oysters  in  particular,  as  their  greater  rate  of  filtration   increase  their  chances  of  coming  into  contact  with  the  parasite.  The  average   mortality  rate  of  market-­‐size  oysters  across  the  Bay  from  1991-­‐2004  is   approximately  5%  -­‐  90%,  and  is  highly  dependent  on  the  salinity  and   prevalence  of  the  disease  in  given  oyster  bars.13       MSX  is  an  intravenous  infection  that  causes  difficulty  with  an  oyster’s   respiration  and  eating,  eventually  leading  to  death.14  Believed  to  have  been   introduced  by  the  illegal  importation  of  the  Pacific  oyster,  it  poses  a  greater   threat  to  adult  oysters  in  the  same  manner  as  that  of  Dermis.15  Similarly  to   Dermis,  it  thrives  in  higher  salinities  and  water  temperature.16     Both  diseases  continue  to  threaten  the  native  Eastern  oyster  population  stock,  as   they  both  kill  oysters  prior  to  the  time  at  which  they  can  be  harvested  and  eliminate   oysters  before  they  are  at  the  age  to  reproduce.  Namely,  the  oyster  reefs  in  the   Southern  region  of  the  Bay  in  Virginia  suffer  from  the  spread  of  the  diseases,  as  they   are  subject  to  more  saline  conditions  and  higher  water  temperatures.17                                                                                                                   10  Baker,  William.  2010  State  of  the  Bay.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,    
2010.    
11  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative   12  Mackin,  J.S.  1956.  Dermocystidium  marinum  and  salinity.  Proceedings  of  the  National  

Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.   Shellfisheries  Association  46:  116-­‐128.  

13  Barber,  B.J.  and  R.  Mann.  1994.  Growth  and  mortality  of  eastern  oysters,  Crassostrea  

virginica  under  challenge  from  the  parasite,  Perkinsus  marinus.  Journal  of  Shellfish  Research   13:  109-­‐114.  

14  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  2010.  

15  Mackin,  J.S.  1956.  Dermocystidium  marinum  and  salinity.  Proceedings  of  the  National  

Shellfisheries  Association  46:  116-­‐128.  
16  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  2010.   17  Mackin,  J.S.  1956.  Dermocystidium  marinum  and  salinity.  Proceedings  of  the  National  

Shellfisheries  Association  46:  116-­‐128.  

 

4  

Stakeholders     All  referenced  “stakeholders”  have  played  vital  roles  in  prior  oyster  restoration   efforts  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  and  would  inevitably  play  a  role  in  any  policy   proposed.18     Government  Agencies:   Environmental  Protection  Agency  (EPA),  National  Atmospheric  and  Oceanic   Administration  (NOAA),  Department  of  the  Interior  (DOI)  –  including  the  Fish  and   Wildlife  Service  (FWS),  The  Chesapeake  Bay  Program  (CBP)  –  Scientific  and   Technical  Advisory  Committee  (STAC)  and  Citizens  Advisory  Committee  (CAC)     Non-­Governmental  Organizations:   Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation  (CBF),  Virginia  Seafood  Council,  Oyster  Reef  Keepers  of   Virginia,  Virginia  Watermen’s  Association,  Maryland  Watermen’s  Association,   Defenders  of  Wildlife,  National  Wildlife  Federation     Individuals  with  vested  interests/donors:   The  Chesapeake  Bay  Trust,  The  Nature  Conservancy,  Restore  America’s  Estuaries,   Butch  Butt  Memorial  Foundation,  The  Cabell  Foundation,  The  Keith  Campbell   Foundation  for  the  Environment,  Pew  Charitable  Trusts,  Virginia  Wellington  Cabot   Foundation19     Advisory  Commissions  and  Multi-­State  Commissions:   Virginia  Institute  of  Marine  Science  (VIMS),  Virginia  and  Maryland  Departments  of   Environmental  Quality  (VA  DEQ  and  MD  DEQ),  Atlantic  States  Marine  Fisheries   Commission,  Delaware  River  Basin  Fish  and  Wildlife  Cooperative     Businesses:   Marinetics,  Hazelwood  Oyster  Farms,  Bevan’s  Oyster  Company,  Mason  Seafood,   Rappahannock  River  Oysters,  Oyster  King  1,  Incorporated,  the  seafood  restaurant   industry  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  area     Oystermen  and  Shucking  Houses  on  the  Bay:   The  1,000  citizens  of  Maryland  and  Virginia  who  possess  oyster  harvesting  licenses   and  the  10  oyster  shucking  houses  that  remain  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  region.20                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
18  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers:  Oyster  Restoration  Plan,  2010.     19  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  2010.   20  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  2010.

  5  

 

  Past  Policies  and  Initiatives:   Historically,  efforts  to  restore  Chesapeake  Bay  oysters  have  been  made  in  the   pattern  of  research  followed  by  experimental  implementation,  as  seen  in  Box  6.1.21    

  Past  Policy  and  Current  Restoration  Efforts  

  Chesapeake  2000  Agreement:   Most  recently,  Section  1.1.1  of  the  Chesapeake  2000  Agreement  (prepared  by  the   Marine  Resources  Commission),  states  that  the  oyster  restoration  goal  of  “…by   2010,  at  a  minimum,  a  tenfold  increase  in  native  oysters  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay,   based  upon  a  1994  baseline.”  In  reaction  to  said  agreement,  little  incremental   progress  has  been  made  as  of  2008  in  the  states  of  Maryland  and  Virginia.  Both   states  have  allocated  a  great  deal  of  their  funding  towards  artificial  habitat   construction,  in  which  83  reefs  across  the  Bay  have  been  restored  with  the  shells  of   oysters  that  have  been  commercially  harvested.  However,  Virginia’s  “Blue  Ribbon   Oyster  Panel”  released  a  review  in  2007,  criticizing  the  failure  of  current  Bay   restoration  efforts  and  urging  states  to  renew  their  focus  on  aquaculture.22                                                                                                                  
21  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative  

 

Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.  

22  "Policy:  Ecosystem  Based  Fisheries  Management  for  the  Chesapeake  Bay."  Maryland  Sea  

Grant.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.  <http://www.mdsg.umd.edu/programs/policy/ebfm/>.  

 

6  

  Introducing  sterile,  hatchery-­‐produced  and  disease-­‐resistant  non-­‐native  oysters   (“Suminoe  oyster”,  or  native  Chinese  C.  ariakensis)  in  order  to  increase  the  native   Chesapeake  Bay  oyster  population  and  prevent  the  complete  demise  of  the  Eastern   Oyster  (C.  virginica).  In  lieu  of  introducing  reproductive  Suminoe  oyster  directly   from  Asia,  this  highly-­‐regulated  form  of  sterile,  non-­‐reproductive  oysters  in  an   aquaculture  setting  would  help  to  boost  the  oyster  industry  while  further  research   is  being  done  to  assess  the  risks  of  introducing  the  non-­‐native,  reproductive  forms   of  the  Suminoe  oyster  into  the  Chesapeake  Bay  ecosystem.23  Culturally  and   historically,  the  Chesapeake  Bay  Region  is  known  for  its  shellfish  harvests.  Restoring   the  population  in  the  timeliest  manner  possible  would  lead  to  the  re-­‐creation  of  this   identity  that  shapes  the  area’s  culture.   Positive  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option:   Research  on  C.  ariakensis  has  supported  the  scientific  notion  that  these  non-­‐native   oysters  are  more  resistant  to  both  DMX  and  dermis,  two  of  the  most  prevalent   oyster  diseases  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  that  have  partially  contributed  to  the  demise   of  the  native  C.  virginica  because  the  Suminoe  oysters  are  more  resilient  to   variations  in  water  salinity  than  is  the  native  oyster  populations.24  The  Suminoe   oyster  has  also  been  scientifically  proven  to  grow  faster  than  the  native  oyster   species.25  The  introduction  of  this  species  could  potentially  help  to  boost  the  oyster   populations  in  the  southern  part  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay  estuary  in  Virginia,  where   the  salinity  is  known  to  be  higher  than  the  northern  part  of  the  Bay  estuary.     Also,  of  all  other  approaches  proposed  by  the  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  this   policy  option  would  allow  for  the  highest  biomass  increase  of  oysters  in  the   Chesapeake  Bay  in  the  shortest  time  frame.26  In  addition  to  the  U.S.  Army  Corps  of   Engineers,  governmental  agencies  on  both  the  federal  and  state  level  such  as  NOAA,   the  EPA,  the  Commonwealths  of  Virginia  and  Maryland  would  work  collaboratively   to  foster  this  policy  implementation  plan,  so  that  “agency  and  government  agendas”   would  not  adversely  affect  this  policy.     Contrasting  with  the  proposed  harvest  moratorium  that  would  need  to  take  place  to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
23  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative  

  Policy  Option  #1:  Introduction  of  Non-­‐Native  Oysters  

Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.  
24  Burreson,  Eugene.  "A  Comparative  Field  Study  of  Crassostrea  ariakensis  and  Crassostrea  

virginica  in  Relation  to  Salinity  in  Virginia."  Applied  Marine  Science  and  Ocean  Engineering   360  (2000):  1-­‐46.  Virginia  Institute  of  Marine  Science.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.   25  Wood,  Pamela.  "'Asian'  Oyster  Study  Will  Offer  Few  Answers."  Hometown  Annapolis  8  Oct.   2009:  C4-­‐C5.  Print.   26  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.   Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.  

 

7  

maintain  current  (already  low)  levels,  this  action  would  not  put  the  watermen  who   depend  on  the  Bay’s  resources  for  economic  purposes  out  of  work.  In  fact,  if  this   policy  were  to  increase  yields,  the  watermen  and  the  seafood  market  would   experience  an  increase  in  business.27   Negative  Facets  of  this  Policy  Option:   Although  only  non-­‐reproductive  Suminoe  oysters  would  be  raised  in  specifically   designated  aquaculture-­‐based  areas,  the  effects  of  doing  so  have  not  been  fully   investigated,  as  non-­‐native  species  interactions  in  a  foreign  environment  are   unpredictable.  This  scientific  uncertainty  leaves  room  for  potential  damages  to  the   fragile  state  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay  ecosystem   It  is  also  difficult  acquiring  a  “Section  10”  permit,  as  it  takes  a  great  deal  of  time,   research,  and  cooperation  between  the  US  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  and  the  Fish   and  Wildlife  Service  (FWS).  The  FWS  conducts  habitat  surveys,  and  evaluates  likely   ecological  impacts  of  proposed  actions,  and  making  recommendations  to  the  Corps   based  on  their  findings.  “Their  input  to  the  Corps  is  provided  both  verbally  and  in   written  documents  such  as  Coordination  Act  Reports,  Planning  Aid  Reports,  and   Planning  Aid  Letters”.28       Supporting  Stakeholders:   The  State  of  Maryland  and  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  are  likely  to  support  this   proposal,  as  both  have  voiced  support  for  similar  policy  proposals:   “The  State  of  Maryland  and  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  propose  to  introduce  the   nonnative  Suminoe  oyster  into  the  tidal  waters  of  Maryland  and  Virginia  for  the   purpose  of  establishing  a  naturalized,  reproducing,  and  self-­sustaining  population  of   this  Asian  species.  Diploid  Suminoe  oysters  would  be  propagated  from  existing  third  or   later  generations  of  the  Oregon  stock  of  this  species,  in  accordance  with  the  ICES  Code   of  Practices  on  the  Introductions  and  Transfers  of  Marine  Organisms  1994  (ICES   1995).  Diploid  Suminoe  oysters  produced  in  hatcheries  would  be  deployed  first  on   State-­designated  sanctuaries  (separate  from  native  oyster  restoration  projects),  where   harvesting  would  be  prohibited  permanently,  then  on  harvest  reserves  and  special   management  areas,  where  selective  harvesting  would  be  allowed.  The  States  further   propose  to  continue  efforts  to  restore  the  native  Eastern  oyster  throughout  the   Chesapeake  Bay  by  using  the  best  available  restoration  strategies  and  stock   assessment  techniques,  including  maintaining  and  expanding  the  existing  network  of   sanctuaries  and  harvest  reserves,  enhancing  the  brood  stock,  and  supplementing  

                                                                                                               
27  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  

Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.  

28  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers.  "Army  Corps  Section  404/Section  10."  Section  10  Permits.  

N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  11  Oct.  2011.  <www.in.gov/indot/files/24_army.pdf>.  

 

8  

natural  recruitment  of  the  species  with  hatchery-­produced  spat.”  29       Other  potential  supporters  of  the  policy  include  the  Johns  Hopkins  School  of  Public   Health,  as  it  recently  released  a  study  supporting  the  introduction  of  non-­‐native   oysters  and  the  economic  benefits  that  doing  so  could  provide.  As  stated  by  the   study,  Suminoe  oysters  are  more  effective  at  filtering  out  algal  blooms  created  by   pollutants  than  are  native  Eastern  oysters.30     The  Committee  on  Non-­‐Native  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  would  also  be   proponents  of  the  policy,  as  is  has  found  much  research  in  favor  of  the  notion  and   worked  in  congruence  with  both  the  Maryland  Sea  Grant  and  the  Virginia  Sea  Grant.   Politicians  in  Maryland  and  Virginia  would  support  this  notion,  as  it  would  increase   regional  jobs,  foster  regional  industries  and  boost  state  revenue.   Members  of  the  Maryland  Watermen’s  Association  and  Maryland  Seafood  Council   and  members  of  the  Virginia  Watermen’s  Association  and  the  Virginia  Seafood   Council  would  benefit  from  this  aquaculture-­‐based  policy,  as  their  future  catches   and  economy  would  have  potential  to  increase.   Oyster-­‐Based  Businesses  such  as:  Marinetics,  Hazelwood  Oyster  Farms,  Bevan’s   Oyster  Company,  Mason  Seafood,  Rappahannock  River  Oysters,  Oyster  King  1,  Inc.   would  benefit  from  seeing  the  potential  economic  gains  and  cultural  reformation   that  would  take  place  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay  Region  as  a  result  of  this  policy   increasing  oyster  biomass  in  the  Bay.       Opposing  Stakeholders:   The  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation  would  likely  oppose  this  policy.  It  has  asserted  in   the  past  that,  despite  the  emerging  evidence  that  such  aquaculture  could  benefit  the   oyster  population,  there  is  not  yet  enough  scientific  research  to  support  that  the   Suminoe  oyster  would  not  pose  a  potential  threat  to  the  Bay  ecosystem.     Environmental  groups  such  as  “Defenders  of  Wildlife”  would  likely  call  for  more   research  to  be  done  before  a  non-­‐native  species  is  introduced  to  the  Chesapeake   Bay.     The  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  would  likely  be  wary  of  the  proposed  policy   because  of  the  governmental  regulations  in  place,  such  as  Article  10,  that  would  be   both  time-­‐consuming  and  fiscally  unsound.                                                                                                                  
29  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.   30  University  of  Miami.  "Marine  Conservation  Science  and  Policy  Service  Learning  Program."  

Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.  

Marine  Issues:  Non-­native  Species.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.   <http://rjd.miami.edu/learning-­‐tools/high-­‐ school/MODULE%204%20Marine%20Issues%20-­‐ %20SECTION%205%20Invasive%20Species.pdf>.  

 

9  

NOAA  may  pose  an  opposition,  as  this  project  requires  more  research  while   implementing  a  costly  aquaculture  system.  As  the  primary  source  of  funding  in  the   past,  this  governmental  agency  may  require  more  research  before  even  this  trial  of   non-­‐reproductive  oysters  are  placed  in  the  Bay.31     Policy  Option  Implementation:   The  National  Environmental  Policy  Act  (NEPA)  would  certainly  call  for  a  more   thorough  investigation  of  the  proposed  initiative  and  any  other  alternatives  because   of  the  potential  impact  that  could  be  had  on  the  Bay.    But,  this  act  and  C.  ariakensis   introduction  would  also  take  place  under  Section  10  of  the  “Rivers  and  Harbors  Act   of  1899”,  which  states  that  project  authorization  for  in-­‐water  structures  necessary   to  harvest  C.  ariakensis  would  be  needed  by  the  US  Army  Corps  of  Engineers.  32   This  project  is  consistent  with  Section  10  of  the  “Fish  and  Wildlife  Coordination  Act”,   the  Corps’  take  on  the  matter  of  non-­‐native  species  introduction  would  lead  the   Corps  to  develop  more  research  on  considering  the  ecological  consequences  of  the   proposed  action.  33   Implementation  over  the  course  of  the  10  year  trial  period  would  be  performed  by   the  Chesapeake  Bay  Program’s  Goal  Implementation  Team  for  Sustainable  Fisheries,   which  has  aided  the  Maryland  Sea  Grant  on  their  current  project,  “Ecosystem-­‐Based   Fisheries  Management  –  A  Cooperative  Project”.34   Funding  would  be  designated  by  the  National  Atmospheric  and  Oceanic   Administration  (NOAA),  as  it  has  been  designating  funding  for  oyster  restoration  in   the  Chesapeake  Bay  in  the  past.  35    
NOAA  Chesapeake  Bay  Office  Annual  Funding  for  Native  Oyster  Restoration  by  Year  
1997   1998   1998   1999   2000   2001   2002   2003   2004   2005   2006   2007   2008   2009   $26K   $26K   $220K   $1.02M   $1.03M   $1.06M   $2.13M   $1.97M   $4.08M   $4.0M   $5.7M   $2.9M   $1.7M   $4.6M  

                                                                                                                   
31  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  

32  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative    

Army  Corps  of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.  

Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.  
33  "Fish  and  Wildlife  Conservation  And  Water  Resource  Developments-­‐Coordination."  Fish  

and  Wildlife  Coordination  Act.  Washington,  D.C.:  U.S.  Legislature,  1934.  661-­‐667e.  Print.  
34  "Policy:  Ecosystem  Based  Fisheries  Management  for  the  Chesapeake  Bay."  Maryland  Sea   35  "NOAA  Chesapeake  Bay  Office  Annual  Funding  for  Native  Oyster  Restoration  by  Year."  

Grant.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.  <http://www.mdsg.umd.edu/programs/policy/ebfm/>.   NOAA:  Chesapeake  Bay  Office.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  11  Oct.  2011.    

 

10  

    Policy  Option  #2:  Imposing  a  Bay-­‐wide  Harvest  Moratorium  on  Native  Oysters  in   Conjunction  with  a  Transitional  Program  for  Displaced  Oystermen     The  imposition  of  a  native  oyster  harvest  moratorium  in  continuation  with  current   native  oyster  restoration  projects  taking  place  across  the  Chesapeake  Bay  would   potentially  serve  to  offset  the  historic  oyster  losses  as  demonstrated  in  the  problem   section.  Implementing  a  temporary,  (10  year)  bay-­‐wide  oyster  harvest  moratorium   could  serve  to  increase  the  native  Chesapeake  Bay  oyster  population  while   preventing  the  complete  demise  of  the  Eastern  Oyster  (C.  virginica).  Such  drastic   policy  implementation  that  was  once  completely  resisted  by  stakeholders  across  the   board  has  recently  gained  media  attention  through  a  recently  released  study.36  This   study,  conducted  by  the  University  of  Maryland  Center  for  Environmental  Science,   concluded  that  a  harvest  moratorium  would  be  the  only  way  to  potentially  increase   oyster  biomass  in  the  Bay.  As  stated  in  the  final  publication  that  appeared  in  the   academic  journal  Marine  Ecology  Progress  Series,  over  99%  of  the  native  Chesapeake   Bay  oysters  have  been  eliminated  from  the  bay  since  their  peak  in  the  early   1800’s.37  Reversing  this  trend  would  ultimately  be  the  goal  of  a  harvest  moratorium,   in  which  the  oyster  stock  may  ultimately  be  able  to  rebuild  to  a  level  that  would   support  a  sustainable  commercial  harvest  in  the  future.   However,  such  legislation  would  eliminate  oyster  catches  for  the  local  watermen  in   the  short  term,  amongst  other  economic  factors.  In  response  to  this  concern,  it  is   proposed  that  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  and  the  State  of  Maryland  could  each   create  a  program  under  which  provisionally  displaced  oystermen  could  be  offered   on-­‐water  work  in  current  oyster  aquaculture  and  sanctuary  programs  across  the   breadth  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Such  a  proposal  would  offset  some  of  the   anticipated  economic  burden  that  watermen  in  the  oyster  industry  would  face  in  the   temporary  elimination  of  their  catches.     Positive  Facets  of  the  Policy  Option:   Fiscal  Benefits  for  the  Chesapeake  Bay  Fishery-­‐Related  Industries   From  a  fiscal  perspective,  a  temporary  oyster  moratorium  would  be  beneficial  to   those  who  depend  on  the  Bay’s  oysters  to  support  their  livelihood.  Fiscally,  due  to   the  fact  that  the  moratorium  would  only  be  a  temporary  imposition,  benefits  to  the   fishery  system  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay  would  be  clear  as  soon  as  the  moratorium  was                                                                                                                   36  Fears, Darryl. "Study Calls for Halting Oyster Fishing in the Chesapeake Bay." The
Washington Post [Washington, D.C.] 1 Sept. 2011: D4-D6. Print.
37  Mansfield,  Mark.  "Ecological  Risk  Assessment  for  Oyster  Restoration  Alternatives."  Final    

   

Programmatic  Oyster  Environmental  Impact  Statement.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  Army  Corps  of     Engineers,  2008.  ES1  -­‐  435.  Print.  

11  

lifted.  Increase  of  profits  for  oystermen,  shippers,  processors,  and  oyster-­‐based   business  would  be  expected  in  concurrence  with  the  expected  increase  of  oyster   biomass  in  the  Bay.  Said  biomass  increase  would  be  a  direct  result  of  the   moratorium’s  allowances  for  the  native  oysters  to  breed,  spawn  and  naturally   increase  the  population,  sans  the  threat  of  commercial  harvests  by  oystermen.   Increase  in  profits  would  also  be  inextricably  linked  to  the  increase  in  oyster   biomass  available  in  specific,  restored  regions  of  the  Bay  because  of  the  increase  in   individual  oystermen  catch  per  unit  of  effort.38   Increasing  the  Ecological  Health  of  the  Bay   A  harvest  moratorium  could  increase  the  overall  ecological  health  of  the  Bay’s  now-­‐ fragile  ecosystem.  According  to  Oyster  Restoration  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay:  A  Cultural   and  Socioeconomic  Assessment,  scientists  (97%)  and  environmentalists  (86%)   support  a  moratorium  because  many  feel  that  even  the  most  seemingly  negligible   harvests  are  offsetting  current  restoration  efforts.39  As  stated  in  the  introductory   section,  oysters  play  a  keystone  ecological  role  in  the  Bay,  serving  as  filters  of  the   polluted  Bay  waters  and  also  as  a  vital  habitat  for  bottom-­‐dwelling  organisms.   Proponents  of  a  moratorium  claim  that  the  only  way  to  increase  the  oyster   populations  and,  in  turn,  to  increase  the  current,  concerning  state  of  the  Bay  is  to   allow  for  native  oysters  to  increase  in  biomass  and  thus  alleviate  some  of  the  Bay’s   larger  problems.  Said  problems  encompass,  but  are  not  limited  to:  pollution,  sewage   treatment,  residential-­‐based  chemical  runoff,  and  agriculture.40  Assuaging  these   problems  would  further  the  underlying  goal  of  a  harvest  moratorium:  to  improve   the  ecological  health  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay.     Elimination  of  Commercial  By-­‐Catch  and  Reef  Damage   Studies  conducted  by  Lenihan  and  associates  demonstrate  that,  in  each  harvesting   event,  a  significant  proportion  of  oysters  (up  to  10%)  are  inadvertently  killed  but   not  collected  as  a  direct  result  of  being  cracked,  broken  or  punctured  by  dredging   equipment  or  other  commercial  machinery.41  A  short  term  commercial  halt  in  the   oyster  industry  would  eliminate  this  issue,  allowing  for  native  oysters  to  reproduce   and  thus  increase  oyster  stock  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.                                                                                                                     38  Lipton, Douglas. Final Draft Economic Analysis for Oyster Restoration Alternatives.
University of Maryland, College Park: Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, 2008. Print. 39  Paolisso, Michael , and Nicole Dery. Oyster Restoration in the Chesapeake Bay: A Cultural and Socioeconomic Assessment. University of Maryland: Department of Anthropology, 2008. 40  Paolisso, Michael , and Nicole Dery. Oyster Restoration in the Chesapeake Bay: A Cultural and Socioeconomic Assessment. University of Maryland: Department of Anthropology, 2008.   41  Lenihan,  H.S.  and  C.H.  Peterson.  2004.  Conserving  oyster  reef  habitat  by  switching  from   dredging  and  tonging  to  diver-­‐harvesting.  Fisheries  Bulletin  102:298-­‐305  

 

12  

  Negative  Facets  of  this  Policy  Option:   Scientific  Uncertainty  of  a  Moratorium’s  Effectiveness   Uncertainty  about  the  past  and  current  rates  of  exploitation  of  the  oyster  population   makes  it  difficult  to  foresee  the  effect  that  a  Bay-­‐wide  moratorium  would  have  on   the  oyster  stock  present  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  This  major  constraint  arising  from   ambiguity  regarding  historical  and  current  exploitation  rates  is  demonstrated  in  a   study  conducted  by  Jordan  and  Coakley,  whose  data  indicated  that  exploitation  rates   of  adult  oysters  in  Maryland  from  1986  to  2001  varied  from  21%  to  73%.42       Stakeholder  Resistance   As  a  great  deal  of  the  Chesapeake  Bay  region’s  cultural  identity  lies  within  the   harvest  and  sale  of  the  Eastern  oyster,  it  is  incredibly  likely  that  watermen,  locals,   and  oyster-­‐based  businesses  would  not  respond  well  to  a  mandated  harvest   moratorium.   Supporting  Stakeholders:   The  State  of  Maryland  and  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  are  likely  to  support  this   proposal,  as  it  would  create  “green”  jobs  for  each  state’s  respective  constituents.   Politicians  in  Maryland  and  Virginia  would  likely  agree  with  the  imposition  of  a   harvest  moratorium,  as  a  program  to  support  provisionally  displaced  oystermen   would  be  created  and  the  ecological  and  cultural  value  of  the  Bay  would  increase  in   the  process  as  well.     97%  of  scientists  and  86%  of  environmentalists  polled  in  the  Oyster  Restoration  in   the  Chesapeake  Bay:  A  Cultural  and  Socioeconomic  Assessment  support  a  moratorium   because  many  feel  that  even  the  most  seemingly  negligible  harvests  are  offsetting   current  restoration  efforts.                                                                                                                                       42  Jordan,  S.J.  and  J.M.  Coakley.  2004.  Long-­‐term  projections  of  eastern  oyster  populations  
under  various  management  scenarios.  Journal  of  Shellfish  Research  23:  63-­‐72.  

 

13  

    Opposing  Stakeholders:   Members  of  the  Maryland  and  Virginia  Watermen’s  Association  and  members  of  the   Maryland  and  Virginia  Seafood  Council  would  not  support  a  halt  in  commercial   harvest,  as  their  members  would  be  frustrated  with  their  job  displacement  and   resulting  loss  of  personal  identity.  Table  5.38  highlights  this  anticipated  pushback   by  watermen.43    
Table  5.38:  Difficulty  Returning  to  the  Oyster  Fishery  if  there  is  A  7+  year  Moratorium  on  Oyster   Harvests  

  Oyster-­‐Based  Businesses  such  as:  Mason  Seafood,  Rappahannock  River  Oysters,   andOyster  King  1,  Inc.  would  certainly  not  be  pleased  with  a  harvest  moratorium,  as   it  would  likely  be  viewed  as  an  “extreme”  conservation  measure  that  could  put  them   out  of  business  from  the  complete  halt  in  fiscal  gain  over  the  proposed  10  year  time   period.       Policy  Option  Implementation:   The  duration  of  the  proposed  harvest  moratorium  would  be  approximately  10   years.  It  would  occur  in  conjunction  with  current  aquaculture  initiatives  and  oyster   bar  restoration  programs  already  in  action  across  the  Bay  region.  Respectively,  the   Maryland  and  Virginia  Marine  Resource  Commission’s  Habitat  Management  Division   would  be  responsible  for  employing  patrolmen  of  the  oyster  reefs  during  this  time.   The  EPA  would  work  in  collaboration  with  the  Virginia  Institute  of  Marine  Science   (VIMS)  to  further  its  education  and  outreach  programs  concerning  oysters  and  their   importance  to  the  Chesapeake  Bay’s  ecosystem,  economy  and  culture.  This   partnership  would  also  be  responsible  for  creating  oyster  restoration  jobs  for  the   watermen  who  will  be  temporarily  displaced  from  their  jobs  during  the   moratorium.  All  parties  would  perform  said  outreach  with  the  funding  designated   annually  for  oyster  restoration  efforts  by  NOAA.  Additionally,  the  Chesapeake  Bay                                                                                                                   43  Paolisso, Michael , and Nicole Dery. Oyster Restoration in the Chesapeake Bay: A Cultural
and Socioeconomic Assessment. University of Maryland, College Park: Department of Anthropology,2008.

 

14  

Foundation  would  be  encouraged  to  continue  and  expand  its  civic   engagement/volunteer  programs  in  oyster  reef  restoration  and  gardening  efforts.       Policy  Option  #3:  Streamlining  the  Permitting  Process  for  Private  Aquaculture  Farmers     This  policy  option  would  establish  regulated  aquaculture  operations  in  the  State  of   Maryland  and  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia.  Namely,  this  policy  would  serve  to   streamline  the  permitting  process  for  private  oyster  aquaculture  firms,  thus  encouraging   more  private  firms  to  enter  the  market  on  the  Chesapeake  Bay.       The  policy  would  allow  for  a  citizen  applying  for  an  individual  permit  to  easily  obtain  an   established  “general”  permit  if  he  is  able  to  show  that  he  can  adequately  satisfy  the   state  and  national  regulations  while  also  proving  that  his  operations  will  pose  little   environmental  harm  to  the  Bay  area  in  which  he  hopes  to  operate.  This  policy  would  be   a  succinct  and  relatively  manageable  manner  from  which  private  firms  could  be   encouraged  to  participate  in  the  sustainable  practice  while  reaping  a  generous  fiscal   benefit.  It  will  also  serve  as  a  means  by  which  oysters  could  be  sold  for  commercial  use,   providing  an  ecologically  sound  alternative  to  harvesting  the  wild,  native  Eastern  oysters   in  need  of  population  stock  repletion.     Positive  Facets  of  this  Policy  Option:     Encouraging  aquaculture  in  the  Chesapeake  would  pose  many  benefits,  including:     Financial  Feasibility:   A  recent  fiscal  analysis  of  a  large-­‐scale  private  aquaculture  industry  was  recently   conducted  by  the  U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers.  The  analysis  stated  that  there  was   plenty  of  room  for  contribution  to  the  commercial  oyster  industry  by  private   aquaculture  firms  based  on  the  low  current  oyster  yields,  claiming  that  the  “annual   production  of  the  maximum  economically  viable  oyster  aquaculture  in  the  Bay  is   estimated  to  be  2.6  million  bushels”.  44                                                                                                                                    
44Lipton,  Douglas.  Final  Draft  Economic  Analysis  for  Oyster  Restoration  Alternatives.    

University  of  Maryland,  College  Park:  Department  of  Agricultural  and  Resource  Economics,     2008.  Print.    

 

15  

  Spatial  Availability   Within  the  analytical  study,  the  Corps  designated  nine  feasible  locations  in  the  Bay   watershed  in  which  private  aquaculture  firms  could  flourish  based  upon  past  oyster   harvests  and  spatial  availability  for  such  operations,  amongst  other  factors.      

    Negative  Facets  of  this  Policy  Option:   Potential  Loss  of  Aesthetic  Value  of  Bayside  Properties     There  is  concern  that  perhaps  these  on-­‐water  aquaculture  operations  could  decrease   the  aesthetic  value  of  Bayside  properties  within  a  close  radius  to  the  sites.       Potential  for  Loss  of  Recreational  Value  of  Bayside  Properties   Accompanying  the  introduction  of  aquaculture  farms  in  the  proposed  locations  would   perhaps  be  restrictions  on  nearby  recreational  activity  such  as  boating  and  recreational   fishing.  Locals  may  not  respond  well  to  such  impositions.     Supporting  Stakeholders:     Local  hatchery  programs  would  fiscally  benefit  from  such  a  policy,  as  the  use  of  their   genetically  altered  spat  would  be  mandated.                                                                                                                    
of  Engineers,    

45

45  Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  Army  Corps    

    16  

United  States  Senators  Ben  Cardin  and  Barbara  Mikulski,  Democrats  from  the  State  of   Maryland,  would  be  in  favor  of  this  option  because  of  their  prior  joint  appeals  to  the   U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  for  similar  action  to  take  place.46     The  State  of  Virginia  would  ultimately  vote  on  behalf  of  this  policy  as  well,  as  efforts  by   the  state  over  recent  decades  have  focused  on  this  sustainable  option.       The  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation  has  invested  time  and  money  into  aquaculture   volunteer  programs  over  the  past  decade,  and  have  advocated  for  aquaculture   expansion  in  its  most  recent  annual  publication.     The  Virginia  Institute  of  Marine  Science  (VIMS)  scientists  and  affiliates  have  been   engaged  in  a  great  deal  of  research  in  the  past  regarding  the  practicability  of   aquaculture  expansion  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  They  would  certainly  support  this  policy   option  for  its  sustainable  undertones  and  adoption  of  their  stated  ideals.47     Opposing  Stakeholders:     Citizens  of  the  State  of  Maryland  and  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  who  reside  within  a   5-­‐10  mile  radius  of  the  proposed  aquaculture  operations  may  oppose  this  policy.  Said   citizens  may  complain  of  new  boating  and  fishing  regulations  that  may  prohibit   recreation  in  these  designated  aquaculture  farms  on  the  Bay.  Perhaps  also  the  citizens   would  potentially  claim  that  said  operations  may  have  a  negative  impact  on  the   aesthetic  value  of  both  their  personal  properties  and  the  Bay  itself.       Policy  Option  Implementation:     This  policy  option  would  mainly  serve  to  increase  the  efficiency  of  private  entities   obtaining  aquaculture  permits  in  both  the  Commonwealth  of  Virginia  and  the  State  of   Maryland.  Specifically,  the  policy  would  require  a  private  entity  seeking  a  general  permit   to  formally  agree  to  satisfy  at  least  the  two  main  “sustainability”  guidelines  before   receiving  an  official  licensing  permit  for  private  aquaculture  operation  from  the  U.S.   Army  Corps  of  Engineers:     1. Employing  a  mixed-­‐use  aquaculture  system  (of  both  on-­‐bottom  and  off-­‐bottom   cages)  that  would  employ  the  most  conservative  amount  of  land  for  growth.  This                                                                                                                   46  "Cardin,  Mikulski  Urge  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  to  Expedite  Oyster  Aquaculture  Permits."    
Ben  Cardin  -­  United  States  Senator  for  Maryland.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  1  Nov.  2011.     <http://cardin.senate.gov/newsroom/press/release/cardin-­‐mikulski-­‐urge-­‐army-­‐corps-­‐of-­‐   engineers-­‐to-­‐expedite-­‐oyster-­‐aquaculture-­‐permits>.  

 
47  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  

Foundation,  2010.  

 

17  

would  be  in  contrast  to  some  current  growers,  who  only  employ  the  use  of  off-­‐ bottom  operations  because  off-­‐bottom  operations  have  been  proven  to   generate  more  than  50%  greater  diploid  and  triploid  oyster  growth  than  on-­‐ bottom  cages.48   This  current,  unsustainable  practice  increases  operational  profits  significantly   while  requiring  more  land  than  is  actually  necessary  for  the  aquaculture  farms  to   thrive.     2. Utilizing  only  native  oyster  (C.  virginica)  spat  produced  by  local  hatcheries.  This   option  is  reactionary  to  current  aquaculture  firms  who  utilize  non-­‐local  spat  for   production.49  Spat  acquired  from  foreign  or  transnational  firms  is  often  not   genetically  altered  in  the  same  way  that  the  local  spat  is  altered,  namely  for   disease  resistance.50  Opting  for  local-­‐only  hatchery  purchases  would  ensure  that   the  required  quantity  of  oyster  spat  is  available  to  local  aquaculture  firms,  and   would  also  support  the  local  economy.                                      

 
                                                                                                                48  Taylor,  Jake,  Mark  Luckenbach,  and  Francis  O'Beirn.  An  Introduction  to  Culturing  Oysters    
in  Virginia.  Newport  News,  Virginia:  Virginia  Marine  Resources  Commission,  1999.  Print.      
49  Taylor,  Jake,  Mark  Luckenbach,  and  Francis  O'Beirn.  An  Introduction  to  Culturing  Oysters    

   

in  Virginia.  Newport  News,  Virginia:  Virginia  Marine  Resources  Commission,  1999.  Print.      
50  On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  

Foundation,  2010.  

 

18  

Works  Cited  
  A  Dwindling  Catch.  Dir.  Matt  Danzeco.  Perf.  Oystermen  Across  the  Bay.  Discovery  Channel,  2008.  Film.     Barber,  B.J.  and  R.  Mann.  1994.  Growth  and  mortality  of  eastern  oysters,  Crassostrea  virginica  under     challenge  from  the  parasite,  Perkinsus  marinus.  Journal  of  Shellfish  Research  13:  109-­‐114.     Baker,  William.  2010  State  of  the  Bay.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  2010.  Print.       Blankenship,  Karl.  "Chesapeake's  Oyster  Reefs  Have  Taken  a  Shellacking."  Chesapeake  Bay  Journal  1   Jan.  2010:  n.  pag.  Chesapeake  Bay  Journal.  Web.  14  Sept.  2011.         Burreson,  Eugene.  "A  Comparative  Field  Study  of  Crassostrea  ariakensis  and       Crassostrea  virginica  in  Relation  to  Salinity  in  Virginia."  Applied  Marine       Science  and  Ocean  Engineering  360  (2000):  1-­‐46.  Virginia  Institute  of  Marine       Science.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.     "Cardin,  Mikulski  Urge  Army  Corps  of  Engineers  to  Expedite  Oyster  Aquaculture  Permits."  Ben  Cardin   -­  United  States  Senator  for  Maryland.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  1  Nov.  2011.   <http://cardin.senate.gov/newsroom/press/release/cardin-­‐mikulski-­‐urge-­‐army-­‐corps-­‐of-­‐ engineers-­‐to-­‐expedite-­‐oyster-­‐aquaculture-­‐permits>.     "Eastern  Oyster  -­‐  Bay  Field  Guide  -­‐  Chesapeake  Bay  Program    ."  A  Watershed  Partnership.  Chesapeake   Bay  Program,  n.d.  Web.  9  Sept.  2011.   <http://www.chesapeakebay.net/american_oyster.htm>.     Fears,  Darryl.  "Study  Calls  for  Halting  Oyster  Fishing  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay."  The  Washington  Post   [Washington,  D.C.]  1  Sept.  2011:  D4-­‐D6.  Print.     "Fish  and  Wildlife  Conservation  And  Water  Resource  Developments-­‐Coordination."  Fish  and  Wildlife   Coordination  Act.  Washington,  D.C.:  U.S.  Legislature,  1934.  661-­‐667e.  Print.     Jordan,  S.J.  and  J.M.  Coakley.  2004.  Long-­‐term  projections  of  eastern  oyster  populations  under   various     management  scenarios.  Journal  of  Shellfish  Research  23:  63-­‐72.     Lenihan,  H.S.  and  C.H.  Peterson.  2004.  Conserving  oyster  reef  habitat  by  switching  from   dredging  and  tonging  to  diver-­‐harvesting.  Fisheries  Bulletin  102:298-­‐305     Lipton,  Douglas.  Final  Draft  Economic  Analysis  for  Oyster  Restoration  Alternatives.  University  of   Maryland,  College  Park:  Department  of  Agricultural  and  Resource  Economics,  2008.  Print.     Mackin,  J.S.  1956.  Dermocystidium  marinum  and  salinity.  Proceedings  of  the  National   Shellfisheries  Association  46:  116-­‐128.     Mansfield,  Mark.  "Ecological  Risk  Assessment  for  Oyster  Restoration  Alternatives."  Final   Programmatic  Oyster  Environmental  Impact  Statement.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  Army  Corps  of   Engineers,  2008.  ES1  -­‐  435.  Print.     Nicklin,  Emmy.  "Hope  for  Bay  Oysters  and  Blue  Crabs?."  Save  The  Bay  Summer  2011:  21.  Print.         "NOAA  Chesapeake  Bay  Office  Annual  Funding  for  Native  Oyster  Restoration  by  Year."  NOAA:   Chesapeake  Bay  Office.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  11  Oct.  2011.   <http://chesapeakebay.noaa.gov/oysters/oyster-­‐restoration>.  

 

19  

  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay.  Washington,  D.C.:  Committee  on  Nonnative  Oysters  in  the   Chesapeake  Bay,  National  Research  Council,  2004.  Print.      On  the  Brink:  Chesapeake's  Native  Oysters.  Annapolis,  Maryland:  Chesapeake  Bay  Foundation,  2010.   Print.         Paolisso,  Michael  ,  and  Nicole  Dery.  Oyster  Restoration  in  the  Chesapeake  Bay:  A  Cultural  and   Socioeconomic  Assessment.  University  of  Maryland,  College  Park:  Department  of   Anthropology,  2008.  Print.     "Policy:  Ecosystem  Based  Fisheries  Management  for  the  Chesapeake  Bay."  Maryland  Sea  Grant.  N.p.,   n.d.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.  <http://www.mdsg.umd.edu/programs/policy/ebfm/>.     Seltzer,  Craig.  Final  Programmatic  Environmental  Impact  Statement  for.  Norfolk,  VA:  U.S.  Army  Corps   of  Engineers,  Norfolk  District,  2008.  Print.     Taylor,  Jake,  Mark  Luckenbach,  and  Francis  O'Beirn.  An  Introduction  to  Culturing  Oysters  in  Virginia.   Newport  News,  Virginia:  Virginia  Marine  Resources  Commission,  1999.  Print.         University  of  Miami.  "Marine  Conservation  Science  and  Policy  Service  Learning  Program."  Marine   Issues:  Non-­native  Species.  N.p.,  n.d.  Web.  10  Oct.  2011.  <http://rjd.miami.edu/learning-­‐ tools/high-­‐school/MODULE%204%20Marine%20Issues%20-­‐ %20SECTION%205%20Invasive%20Species.pdf>.     U.S.  Army  Corps  of  Engineers.  "Army  Corps  Section  404/Section  10."  Section  10  Permits.  N.p.,  n.d.   Web.  11  Oct.  2011.  <www.in.gov/indot/files/24_army.pdf>.     Wood,  Pamela.  "'Asian'  Oyster  Study  Will  Offer  Few  Answers."  Hometown  Annapolis  8  Oct.  2009:  C4-­‐ C5.  Print.  

 

 

20  

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful