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

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