Wednesday, December 9, 2009

MRI of an Oyster Beautiful Images

Mathew and the team at Bruker Corp have graciously supplied these fascinating images. If you click on the first two they might rotate in 3-D.

:Live Oyster

Oyster Shell

Oyster still  CT

Dive Team Places Monitoring Equipment Despite Snowfall

One of the most inspiring aspects of MOP is the dedication of our volunteers. This past Sunday our dive team walked through snow to get to the dive site to get in and place temperature sensing I-buttons. When meeting them I told them never to contact me to testify pm their behalf at a mental competency hearing as this seemed crazy to me. I was cold just watching them.


The I-buttons are low-cost devices that can record water temperature every four hours over a year. We are curious to see what kind of variation we may see as the readings may be impacted by tides, flows from the Charles, depths and location. We learned about the technology at a Coastal Environmental Senxing Networks conference at UMass Boston this Summer. This portion of the Project is being spearheaded by Rich Bradshaw.

Here is a link to the Picazza  photo album of the day.Snowy I-Button Dive

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Welcome Mathew Brevard to the MOP Board of Directors

Welcome Mat Brevard to the MOP Board of Directors.

If you have attended any dive or MOP event, you may have noticed the tall diver Mathew Brevard. He has done world’s of good for MOP beyond his frequent volunteer dives and production of oyster cages. He has provided numerous ideas to bring scientific discipline to our placements and assembled a world class team of diving volunteers.
He has recently joined the MOP board and we are ecstatic to have him with us.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Visit to Wellfleet Bay Audobon Center

Over the Thanksgiving weekend, my family visited the impressive Audobon Center in South Wellfleet, MA. Wellfleet Audobon Center  There we met with Center Director Bob Prescott who is the driving force behind their oyster reef restoration project. They are placing down bags of shell for the native oyster seed to attach to and form a reef. Here is some information on the project. Wellfleet oyster restoration

Unfortunately, high winds and rough seas made it impossible for us to visit the actual site. But we did get to visit their impressive center and walk among the beautiful preserve and do some bird watching. We offered to drive the six rescued sea turtles on hand back home with us to the New England Aquarium, but another lucky volunteer beat us to the honor.
We also discussed the idea of an oyster restoration meeting to bring all the parties in the state active in this field together to compare notes and share experiences. Our state trails others along the Eastern Seaboard significantly in its oyster restoration efforts, but we seem to be building momentum!

Below is a picture of an oyster catcher taken by Susannah in Nahant. She is a Friend of the Belle Isle Marsh. (Don't worry- our oysters are too big for this fellow to eat.)

Monday, November 30, 2009

MOP Collaborates with UMass Boston to Bring Oysters to Dorchester’s Malibu Beach

The day was cold and blustery but the prospects for Dorchester’s Malibu Bay become noticeably brighter with the placement of a test population of 200 oysters. The oysters were part of the population purchased from our friends and supporters at Island Creek Oysters of Duxbury. They were placed in milk crate cages off of the docks at Dorchester Yacht Club Dorchester Yacht Club in conjunction with faculty and students at UMass Boston.

The red flag indicating unsafe water quality is an unwelcome sign at Malibu beach, occurring with greater frequency than anyone would like. A large part of the problem is Combined Sewer Overflows (CSO’s) that release minimally treated waste water into the harbor during periods of heavy rains.

UMass Boston Professor Anamarija Frankic who runs the Green Boston Harbor Project reached out to contacts at Dorchester Yacht Club (DYC) who are interested in improving the state of the Harbor. Caring for the water is important to the Club who maintains a pump-out facility to ensure no waste from the boats enters the Harbor.

There is deep soft silt in the Bay so a permanent placement of oysters would need to be carefully orchestrated to ensure that the mollusks are placed on a firm surface where they would not be smothered.

We will measure them; tracking their growth and mortality, while also monitoring water conditions including temperature. These oysters are only an inch long, so we expect some mortality this winter as their lower body mass makes them susceptible to death from hypothermia. But just as acorns grow to mighty oaks, this project could lead to bigger things.

For MOP this is significant for several reasons. This is our first placement outside the Charles Estuary. We are involving other neighborhoods and groups in our effort to clean Boston Harbor. We will obtain additional valuable data.

Here are some photos of the day...Dorchester Oyster Placement Phtotos

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

U-tube video of oyster drop

The video team from Bunker Hill Community College came early and stayed late to produce this video for us. It does a nice job of laying out the stations and the day.    You can see it by clicking here Boston Harbor Oyster Restoration U-Tube Video  It also incorporates some footage of the bottom that was graciously captured by the Army Corps of Engineers when  they were testing out a new camera. Thank you everyone!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Oyster Placement Goes Beautifully

As we picked up the oysters on the night of October 28th the rain was streaming down and we had almost no fuel in the van loaned to us by Island Creek Oysters. We soon found an open station and brought the 50,000 bivalves that were carefully packed and cooled inside to Charlestownfor an overnight stop. From that inauspicious moment things improved dramatically.

The rains subsided and there was a glorious sunrise as we left Dunkin Doughnuts with morning refreshments for the volunteers. Upon arrival at the drop site, the first of the divers Dave"inspector gadget" was already there with a trailer full of equipment, a tent frame/shelter up and a grin wide enough to cross the Charles. He even brought his 11 year old son Matt along who was a tremendous help. As we began unpacking, an inspiring  stream of volunteers began arriving: Lisa from UMass, MOP stalwart Pam Bradie, Jarrett from the Mystic River Watershed, Mat Brevard our dive leader, Frans from the Charles River Swim. And they kept coming.

To see photos you can go to this web album. MOP 2009 Placement

Everyone pitched in and we had a very nice day. We mesured oysters, placed them into frames designed and built by Mat, while the divers hit the water. On the next dive they began placing them in the water, the afternoon culminated with area children disbursing the last 40,000 oysters from a boat into carefully marked areas. (Last year the boats drifted a bit and some of the oysters landed in areas with significant silt.)

Here is a link to oyster-blogger Josh's write up Josh's photos

The day ended well. Now we wait and see how they do.

There have been some other nice developments. We had press coverage extended out to the Worcester Telegram..

Here is a link to the Article in the Boston Herald.

Other non-profits are begginning to show an interest in getting involved. The wave is beginning to grow.

We have so much still to do. We hope to file three more grants in the next month to position us better for the future. Remember MOP is all volunteer so the funds we raise go into our Harbor!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Island Creek- More than oysters Looking good for Sunday Placement

MOP is buying 50,000 seed oysters for Sunday's placement event from Island Creek Oysters. These guys have been terrific in terms of sharing information, moral support, etc. But they do more than sell their delicious oysters to the finest restaurants around the country. They have a foundation that is involved in numerous charities, these extend from Duxbury to helping develop sustainable aquaculture in parts of Africa!

They also do more than oysters. Tonight my family will be feasting on scallops and razor clams we purchased through their on-line store. Here is the link-Island Creek Store

It looks like things are looking good for Sunday. We have an awesome group of volunteers coming to pitch in and have fun. (This crew would make a terrific cocktail party invitation list- with college professors, bloggers, scientists, environmentalists, teachers, divers, students and more.)

The weather appears to be cooperating, but we place them rain or shine.

Let the oysters flourish!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Oyster Placement comng together nicely! Interesting presentation on oyster disease.

We have had a nice response to our request for volunteers on October 25th for placing the oysters. It will be good for everyone to get together, meet up and pitch in. With a good turn-out the workload should be fun and not burdensome.

Below is a link discussing an oyster disease- Dermo and Wellfleet harbor. Diseases such as Dermo and MSX continue to put pressure on oyster populations along the Atlantic coast.

We are creating a sanctuary population in Boston Harbor, that we hope will be isolated from this condition. It is our understanding that our oysters come from a source that is not infected.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Belle Isle Marsh Festival MOP NOAA Presentation on-line

On Sunday, MOP had a tabel at the Belle Isle Marsh Festival in Winthrop. Our table included an overview of our restoration effort, some of our oysters (pulled freshly from a cage in the Charles estuary) literature and t-shirts for sale. While getting there was challenging due to filming of the latest Ben Affleck movie in Charlestown, it was well worth fighting the unexpected traffic hassles. The Marsh is beautiful and the event was fun! Children loved holding the oysters and the shrimp swimmng among them. They also had hayrides, a critter exhibit and pumking decorating.

We focused on three messages.
1. An oyster can filter 30 gallons of water per day.
2. Oysters add to biodiversity with up to 200 other species living on a reef. (The shrimp aptly illustrated this.)
3. The oysters can survive in the harbor. We had oysters survive last winter and the oysters are growing well in the cage. We just need to find the right location on the bottom.

We have posted the presentation we gave at the July NOAA meeting on slideshare. You can see it here.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Oyster Placement Date Sunday October 25 Caged Oysters Growing No Reproduction

Our dive team has settled on the morning of Sunday October 25 for the next oyster placement in the Charles River Estuary. We will need volunteers to help out measuring oysters, some light moving of equipment, and of course kids (6-12 years old) to help spread the oysters. Please email us if you want to be a part of this event.

Our caged oysters in the Charles are continuing to grow at an amazing pace. Since placing them on August 12, they have grown from the size of dimes to Kennedy half dollars. It is amazaing to pull up the cage and see all the other creatures that have set up home. You can see photos here.
Oyster Cages in September

The smaller oyster that is just right of center at the top is a bit larger than the original size.

There was no sign of young oyster spat settlement on the bags of shell we set down. The shell bags had many barnacles and mussells, but no sign of oysters. This is not a surprise as we were not fully expecting reproduction until year two. Also, the silt run-off and deposition was extensive and buried a fair percentage of them. The photo below shows one of the quoahog shells we placed.

Here is a link to the full slide show of the bags of shell.

Finallly, the Army Corps of Engineers has been providing some informal advise to MOP. They had an underwater camera that needed testing and they have imaged portions of the Charles Estuary for us.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Caged Oysters Growing Surprisingly Well- Lots of Other Sea Life

On August 12th we hung two cages containing dimed sized oysters off of the docks at the Constitution Marina in Charlestown. 23 days later many of the dimed sized oysters have grown larger than quarters.

A few attached to our anchor bricks, which was a bit of a surprise.

The cages also teemed with sea-life with lots of shrimp and other small creatures. Perhaps there is something about oysters that draws them into the cages. Or the cages might be a haven from preditors, like an oyster reef.

Here is a view of the cage assembly, we rinsed them off before replacing them in the water. This removed a great deal of the fouling organisms.

Here is an oyster that has adhered to the brick weight. We were surprised to see this occur with an oyster at this age. But we started this pilot to learn and are we ever!
This cage was pressed between the dock and the bottom and had several crabs. We removed the crabs and hung it in a different location where it should remain off of the bottom.

So we now know that oysters can grow nicely in the Charles Estuary as well as that they can survive the winter.

Here is a link to a more complete series of photos.Oyster Cages Charles River

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Grant Research-- Deadlines

While researching oyster restoration late last night, I came across a terrific program in New Jersey that was funded by the Fish America Foundation and NOAA. Hurrying to their web-sites, I was dissappointed that we had missed the deadline for applications for this year. But we will be ready to apply in the 2010 application cycle.

We also are getting ready to file for a grant for Boston's Chelsea Creek.

Here is the link to the NJ program...

NJ Mullica River Oyster Restoration

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Web site updated- Wellfleet oystermen battered

At last we have spent time on the web-site bringing it up to date with better information and a page En Espanol written by Guillermo Bascunana A Friend of MOP residing in Barcelona Spain. Bravo!

We also learned with dismay about the difficult times experienced by oystermen in Wellfleet. The recent storm really did a number on several growers. Here is the full story.

Cape Oyster Farmers

It is important for there to be a healthy oyster industry as the oystermen can be great advocates for the species.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Dive Results-- Murky

Sunday was an interesting day. Mat lead our intrepid dive team which has added a cool new member- Dave with the light and pickuptruck shower- to the crew. The tide was medium, the skies gray and the bottom murky making for challenging visibility on the bottom.

The oysters had received considerable silt since the spring dive and the drifting of the boats during lasto October's placment may have hurt the effort dearly. (The oysters were intended to be dropped in a specific area with a hard stony bottom, but many wound up wide of the mark in areas with silt and more silt has subsequently fallen.)

Nonethless a portion are still alive and the divers reported those that were concentrated together are doing best.

We wanted to learn from this pilot and we are. The lesson for this Fall' placement are:

1. place a portion of them in a well anchored cages or apparatuses that is conducive to measurment. (We lost our last cage in the winter.) This facilitates tracking growth and viability.

2. Disburse oysters in a tight pattern in an area with desirable bottom conditions. (The dive team identified and explored such a site, downstream from our initial location.)

3. Establish more caged populations. We put two down off of the Constitution Marinaon Sunday. The oysters supplied by the awesome team at Island Creek were the size of dimes and we had 70 in one device and 121 in the other. These cages were made of milk crates lined with a fine mesh. I will post photos later.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Great meeting with Army Corps and application for Malibu Beach

We had a great meeting with a gentleman at the Army Corps of Engineers. There may be several ways that we can work together. They were instrumental in the oyster success in the Virginia River.

In the near term, they may test out a camera on our oysters and another potential site for them.

In response to a suggestion from DR. Anamarija Frankic of UMass Boston, we have contacted DMF seeking permission to establish a small caged test oyster population at the Dorchester Yacht Club off of Malibu Beach. Anamarija has started the Green Boston Harbor project. Go here to learn more.

Contribute without writing a check! Mass Oyster Project Affinity Card

We have partnered with CapitalOne to develop an affinity credit card. If you sign up and use it once. They donate $25 to MOP. And 1% of all paid charges thereafter would go to MOP. We will use thes funds to help place oysters in the harbor. Here is the link.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Checking on Reproduction Volunteer! TV

The water temperature on the bottom of the Charles is reaching 70 degrees and our volunteer dive team is heading down to check on our oysters this Sunday. They will be sampling the oysters to see if their internal organs are ready to reproduce or have already given off sperm or eggs.

To gain further information on their reproduction we have also placed bags of Quahog shells to see if any spat settle on them. (Spat are the infant oysters that swim around for the first two weeks and then attach to hard surfaces.) Note that some experts don't believe reproduction is likely until year two.

We need volunteers. We are increasingly being asked to attend other environmental events. If you are interested in getting out, meeting people, manning a table, and selling a few t-shirts. Let us know. For example, there is a Dorchester Beach Festival this Saturday August 8. There also is an event at Winthrop's Belle Isle Marsh on October 4. Here is a chance to get involved. Take it.

We are going to be on TV. Pam Brodie and I have been asked to be on Charlestown Cable TV on August 7 at 6:30.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Oyster Restoration Success in Virginia

Check out this video and story on an oyster restoration success in the Virginia River.

They are capitalizing on an abundance of free-floating young oysters in the area- swim for two weeks and then settle on to hard surfaces. A luxury we don't yet have. They also used a large amount of fossil shell.

Here is the link to video.

Here is the link to a NYTimes article.

Importantly the area is closed to harvesting.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Getting Warmer Putting down caged oysters

The bottom temperature measured 69 degrees today. The oysters can reproduce at 70 degrees so we are almost there.

The bacterial testing has been completed by the Island Creek team, so next week we can put down oysters in cages (milk crates.) I will probably do this Tuesday night.

It looks like our dive team will be checking on the oysters the night of Sunday August 9th. They also will be scoping out a spot nearby for the placement of oysters this fall.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Water Temperatures Grant News

We went to the Charles site last night and measured the water temperature on the bottom where are oysters rest. The water temperature remains at 64 degrees, well below surface temperatures in the 70's. This is great for growing oysters, but probably a bit cold for reproduction. We will keep monitoring this situation. The dive team is planning to revisit the site on August 8th.

The hard work of Hannah our volunteer Grant Coordinator is bearing fruit. We have a call scheduled for the week of the 27th with one of the funders. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

MOP Goes Scientific

It is an exciting week coming up for MOP on the scientific side. We have a poster presentation and an oral presentation on Tuesday for the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration Coastal Zone meeting on Tuesday. On Friday we also will have a poster presentation at the Conference On Coastal Environmental Sensing Networks CESN that will be held at UMass Boston. These conferences will provide us with the opportunity to interact with scientists and oceanographers from around the country and to build/strengthen ties with academia.

A special shout out to our Dive Captain Matt Brevard who will present a Poster discussing the growth and anatomic dissection of a sample of our oysters.

If you are at the events, please seek us out.

As to our oysters, we are taking the water temperature periodically to see when it reaches spawning temperature on the bottom. At 65 degrees it is still a bit cold, but it is rising a degree every couple days. We have put down quahog shells in mesh bags on the bottom and suspended in the water column. If the oysters reproduce we should see seed oysters on them later this summer. Matt is also coordinating a dive to take some oysters so he can examine their reproductive organs.

Note that there is some debate about whether we will see reproduction in year one as in the early phase of their lives most oysters are males, then some cross-over to females. Reproduction would be great. But, the lack of it would not be conclusive.

I also had some time to visit with the team at our oyster supplier Island Creek in Duxbury. Skip and the team walked me through all the steps of the operation from seed, to harbor, to bagging for market. This organization impresses me more and more. (Thank you Shore for giving me the shirt of your back!)

We also received some global publicity through the Siemens employee Magazine. They did a piece on the project and it reaches 200,000 people around the Globe. (Now if we can only get sponsorship from the water technologies group.)

We are refining our plans for the Fall, and donations would help. Don’t' be afraid to donate through the web-site.
Posted by Mass Oyster Project at 8:32 AM 0 comments
B&G Oyster Event Spring Check on Charles

B&G Oyster Event Spring Check on Charles

The B&G Oyster event for Sunday May 3 is sold out. If you do not have a ticket yet, we are sorry there is no more room.

Today our intrepid divers Mathew Brevard and Rich Bradshaw braved 53 degree waters to check on our bivalve friends. The results were encouraging. Survival since the placement last fall was 50%, a bit below what we had hoped for, but still quite respectable. Importantly, the oysters that did survive grew approximately 25%. Matt will be performing measurements on a small sample and compare them to oysters taken from the batch at the time of the initial placement. The numbers will be used for his poster presentation at the NOAA Coastal Zone Meeting in July.

There was no obvious cause of the mortality, but we will be conducting some work with caged populations and examining pictures taken with an underwater camera graciously loaned to the program by UMass Boston Professor Anamarija Frankic. We will be working with her organization on our next placement that will probably be in the vicinity of the Neponset River. We are learning a lot and this knowledge should lead to even better results in later placements.

Our efforts to win a grant from the Massachusetts Environmental Trust (environmental license plates) were not successful. However, our Grant Coordinator Hannah Dale will have two more going out shortly.

We also have had a terrific meeting with the MWRA and there may be some ways for us to work towards mutual goal of making Boston Harbor as clean and healthy as possible.

In the coming weeks we also have a meeting scheduled with Boston Water and Sewer who also appears favorably disposed.

Over the next few days, we will update the website to reflect the information and bottom photos from this dive and information from the B&G event.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The spring is here and we have lots going on.

First, we are eagerly awaiting news on our application for a grant from the Massachusetts Environmental Trust (whale tail license plates) as this could be a very helpful source of funds for 2009 efforts. We are tentatively planning to place more oysters in the Charles River estuary and also to initiate a pilot on the Neponset River estuary in conjunction with the Neponset River Watershed Association. We will need to apply for permits once we hear on-or-about May 4.

Second, we are looking forward to a report from divers who will check on the oysters between the North End and Charlestown on a May weekend. This date will be nailed down shortly and we will get it out to you should you want to be there.

Third, we had a terrific meeting with the team at UMass Boston who is very interested in working with us in several capacities. We are excited by this budding relationship and have plans to apply for a grant together.

Fourth, we have an intern who has been assisting MOP in seeking grants and we will be filing for two shortly.

Finally, we have a fun fundraiser coming up at B&G Oysters on May 3. We will have a table set up and will be capitalizing on this fun opportunity to raise our profile. We hope to see you there!

Oyster Invitational
Sunday, May 3rd, 12pm-8pm, rain or shine!
550 Tremont Street

What better way to kick off the summer season and celebrate B&G Oyster’s 5th patio opening than with an oyster extravaganza?
Join us on Sunday, May 3rd for a day filled with friendly (and tasty) competitions, a discerning panel of judges, cold beer and oyster-friendly wines, signature small plates, unlimited oysters, and even appearances by the WORLD’S fastest oyster shucker! Tickets are available by calling (617.423.0550) or visiting B&G Oysters and are $45 per person in advance ($55 day of). Ticket price includes admission, one raffle ticket, two drink tickets, and unlimited oysters along with passed signature dishes & competition dishes. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Massachusetts Oyster Project, an organization dedicated to the restoration of oysters to marine estuaries in the Boston area.

The celebration will continue across the street at Stir (102 Waltham Street), where B&G servers and chefs will host "What’s your Oyster Profile?" classes throughout the afternoon. The 45 minute class will explore east coast and west coast varieties and include a sampling of oysters and a glass of wine. Tickets to the class will be available for $40 (or $75 for class plus entrance to the Oyster Invitational) and a spot may be reserved by calling or visiting B&G Oysters. In addition to the classes, author Rowan Jacobsen will be at Stir for an afternoon book signing.

B&G Oysters
Great Bay
Kingfish Hall
Neptune Oyster
No.9 Park
O Ya
Sel de la Terre
Summer Shack
Chopper Young, The World’s Fastest Oyster Shucker
Rowan Jacobsen, author of The Geography of Oysters
Island Creek Oysters, Cotuit Oysters, Harpoon Brewery

Schedule of Events

12:30 to 1:15 "Discover Your Oyster Profile" Stir Seminar*: Are you more East Coast or West Coast? B&G servers Heather Kennaway and Mark Simes will guide guests through the ins and outs of East and West Coast oysters complete with a sampling of different varieties and glass of wine.

12:45 Raffle Drawing

1:00 B&G Shuckers Shuck Off!: We’ve been debating and they’ve been training, so who’s the best? Today we find out when B&G’s top-notch team takes on their Chef in the fight for the title of B&G’s fastest shucker and the right to be B&G’s champion in the Oyster Invitational Shucking Finals!

1:15 World’s Fastest Shucker Demo: Our guys are fast but this guy is faster! 37 oysters in 2.5 minutes fast to be exact! William "Chopper’ Young from Wellfleet is the fastest shucker in the world and winner of the Guinness World Oyster Opening Championships and he’s here to demonstrate his shucking prowess.

1:15-2:00 Book Signing at Stir: Meet oyster guru, Rowan Jacobson, author of A Geography of Oysters. This book is a staff favorite and a must-read for any oyster lover.

2:00 World’s Fastest Shucker Demo: William "Chopper" Young demonstrates his unique oyster shucking technique, which has earned him bragging rights as the world’s fastest oyster shucker.

1:30-2:15 Chef’s competition: Best Original Raw presentation

While we all appreciate the sublime simplicity of an icy, unadorned oyster, a little creativity from chefs is always a fun thing to observe (and taste). For this competition, three chefs will think outside of the box and present their most original raw oyster dish.

2:15 to 3:00 Stir Seminar*: We all know that the staff at B&G knows their oysters. But even we get stumped sometimes. When we have a question, there’s one guy we go to: Rowan Jacobson, author of A Geography of Oysters. He knows it all! In this class Rowan will guide guests through different varieties of oysters, East and West Coast, North to South, to help determine their oyster profiles.

2:45 Oyster Company Shuck Off!: Yeah, they grow great oysters, but how fast can they shuck ‘em? Oyster farmers from Island Creek and Cotuit Oyster Company show what they can do with a shucking knife.

3:00 Raffle Drawing

3:15 World’s Fastest Shucker Demo William "Chopper" Young, the world’s fastest oyster shucker shows off his stuff. Be quick, or you might miss it; Chopper can shuck 37 oysters in 2.5 minutes!

3:15 to 4:00 Book signing at Stir: Chat with Rowan Jacobson, author of A Geography of Oysters.

3:30 Invitational Shuck Off! Round 1: Professional oyster shuckers from O Ya, Great Bay and Kingfish Hall face off for a place in the Invitational finals.

4-4:45 Chef’s Competition: Best Riff on a Classic
Oysters on the half shell with mignonette, oyster po’ boys, & oysters Rockefeller are all tried and true classics but in this competition, participating chefs will present their modern take on a favorite, time-honored dish.

5:00 Invitational Shuck Off! Round 2 Neptune Oyster, Summer Shack and No 9 Park have sent us their fastest oyster shuckers to battle it out in our Shuck Off!

5:15 Raffle Drawing

5:30 Shuck Off! Finals! Who’s the fastest of them all? The day’s festivities culminate with this final competition. B&G’s Oyster Shucking champion will take on three challengers in the final Shuck Off of the day!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Shuck Off Event a Success- Grant Filing

While it has been cold and the oysters have been dormant, MOP has been active on their behalf. We finally have obtained our official non-profit status with our 501c-3 from the IRS. Special thanks to Foley and Hoag who helped us answer a few questions at the last minute. We also deeply appreciate the support of the Charlestown Waterfront Coalition who sheltered us under their designation in the early days. They also have been generous with contacts, grant leads and other support.

We have filed a grant application with the Mass Environmental
Trust requesting funding for continuing our work in the Charles River Estuary. This funding comes from the state's environmental license plate program. With this we are also looking to place oysters in the Neponset Estuary. We have the support of the Neponset River Watershed Association who will partner with us on that placement.

The Shuck-off! oyster night at Tavern on the Water was a big success raising over $500. For those of you who turned out, thank you for coming. For those who did not, we will be holding similar fun events in the future. Special thanks to Jim and Ally at Shuck Off. You can purchase their salty apparel at

The dive team is looking forward to getting back in the water to
check on the oysters in May. If you have access to an underwater camera please let us know. We would like to add photos to the web-site.