Monday, December 30, 2013

Oyster Shell Recycling and Oyster Gardening- Conceptual Work from Harvard Students

Over the past three months, Mass Oyster has been working with students from Harvard's Graduate School of Design. Kelly Murphy and Jenny Corlett have been joys to work with as they have thought about the tremendous volume of oyster shell that is wasted as it winds up in landfills around the state.

Harvard Students favoring oyster shell recycling.
Harvard Graduate School of Design Students Jen and Kelly with Oysters

Here is a link to Kelly's blog, which discusses their work. They estimate that 300,000 pounds of oyster shell are wasted each year by Boston Restaurants alone.

They also developed a cage concept for oyster gardening.

Oyster gardening Harvard
Jen Corlett manufacturing an oyster cage.
We particularly liked this video.

Oyster">">Oyster Gardens for a Healthy Harbor: Rethinking Boston's Oyster Culture
from Kelly">">Kelly Murphy on Vimeo.">Vimeo.>

And here is their final presentation.

AQUAPLOT">">AQUAPLOT: an oyster garden proposal for Boston.
from Kelly">">Kelly Murphy on Vimeo.">Vimeo.>

With an oyster sampling, how could they not knock the cover off the ball!

Oyster Shucking at the Final Presentation. You may recognize the face of Deniz Bertuna Wellfleet oyster restoration intern MOP sponsored this summer.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Training Opporltunity for Oyster Growers to Learn to Market Their Environmetal Friendliness

The East Coast Shellfish Research Institute, an arm of the East Coast Shellfish Growers Association, has received a grant from USDA/NIFA Risk Management Education Northeast Center to do a workshop in all of the northeast coastal states. The focus of these workshops is to help growers document the environmental soundness of their operation, show how this extremely simple technology can improve their profitability, learn something new and relevant, and understand what to do in case of mortalities in field growout.
Would you like to show your customers and consumers that you really are an environmentally aware shellfish farmer?  Would you like to improve the marketing for your crop, as well as know what to do if you have a major mortality?  And maybe why it’s a good idea to keep decent production records? Well, this workshop may just be the thing for you!
We will have some hands-on work documenting your operation into an Individual Farm Plan, show how to create a Point of Purchase brochure, learn some other new things, and get some personal attention for growing your future success.
The workshops are free of charge but we’d like you to RSVP to your state Aquaculture Extension Specialist about your participation.  We may send some other suggestions about what to bring with you to help the process.
The schedule is as follows:
Monday January 20, 2014.  7 to 9PM.  University of Delaware, Lewes Campus, Room 104, Cannon Laboratory,
700 Pilottown Road, Lewes, DE19958
Tuesday January 21 6:30 to 8:30PM, MD Dept of Natural Resources, C-1 conference room,
580 Taylor Ave, AnnapolisMD
New Jersey
Wednesday January 22, 1 to 4PM.  Rutgers Cooperative Extension Office,
6260 Old Harding Hwy
, Mays Landing, NJ08330
New York
Thursday January 23, 1 to 4PM, Cornell Cooperative Extension,
423 Griffing Avenue, Riverhead, NY11901
Friday January 24, 1 to 4PM, University of Connecticut, AveryPoint, MarineSciencesBuilding,  Room 103,
1080 Shennecossett Road, Groton, CT06340
Rhode Island
Saturday January 25, 1-4PM. Hazard Rooms, Coastal Institute at the Narragansett Bay Campus
215 South Ferry Rd, Narragansett, RI, 02882
Monday January 27, 1 to 4PM, University of Maine, Hutchinson Center, 80 Belmont Avenue (Route #3) Belfast, Maine 04915
New Hampshire/Northshore Massachusetts
Tuesday January 28, 1 to 3:30PM, University of New Hampshire, Urban Forestry Center, 45 Elwyn Road, Portsmouth, N.H. 03801
Wednesday January 29, 10AM to 1PM. Harbor View Conference Room, OldJailBuilding - BarnstableSuperior Courthouse Complex,
3195 Main Street, Barnstable, MA02630
Attendees are invited to bring with them all the information they would need to complete the plan (actually not much…state permit numbers mostly). They would create the trifold brochure at home on their own after instruction at the workshop, but people on the grant would be available by phone or email to help with those also after the workshops.
So, put these dates on your calendar so you can attend. 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

For Oyster Restoration Maryland Imports 100 Tons of Fossil Shell from Florida.


The article below was in the Miami Herald.  The irony of this situation is that around the country thousands of pounds of oyster shell are thrown away every day.  As Mass Oyster's shell recycling program gains momentum we hopefully will capture more of this valuable waste stream and begin putting it to work. To that end,  we recently met with a local town's Conservation Committee to pitch the idea of using the shell to create a platform for young oysters to settle on.  We will be following up with their Town Council early next year.
The volumes are astounding! 50 train cars every 10 days- from now through September.  Will there be anything of Florida left when they are done?
Note that the National Fish and Wildlife Service is involved. Yet again Federal dollars are flowing to other states. And the Bay State is just beginning to see stirrings in town in the Cape. Come on! Lets tap into those Federal dollars, improve our estuaries and create some jobs.

Tons of fossilized oyster shells headed to MD


Associated Press

The first of several shipments containing more than 100,000 tons of fossilized oyster shells was scheduled to be unveiled Friday as part of a public-private partnership to help rebuild habitat in oyster sanctuaries on Maryland's Eastern Shore.
Gov. Martin O'Malley was scheduled to attend an event at the Port of Baltimore to show the first 2,750 tons. The shells have been shipped from a Florida quarry in a partnership with CSX, which will be transporting 112,500 tons of the fossilized shells by train over the next nine months. The shells are headed to reef restoration initiatives in Harris Creek and the Little Choptank River.
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources spent about $6.3 million to acquire the shells.   "Innovative programs and partnerships like these are making our record investments in restoration, aquaculture, stewardship and enforcement possible," O'Malley said in a statement.
Maryland does not have natural and affordable shells available to support restoration of the 377-acre Harris Creek sanctuary, so the natural resources department bought the fossilized shells from Gulf Coast Aggregates near Carrabelle, Fla. The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation negotiated an agreement with CSX to transport the shells, the department said.
oyster restortion with fossil oyster shell
Rail Cars for moving recycled shell.
Under the agreement, CSX will transport about 50 train cars of fossilized shells to Curtis Bay every 10 to 14 days between now and September. The shells will then be sent by barge to the Eastern Shore sanctuaries.
The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science and the Oyster Recovery Partnership will produce young oysters and put them on the new reefs.
"The collaboration is monumental as it allows us to complete the substrate construction of the largest tributary-focused oyster reef restoration project on the East Coast, possibly the nation," said Stephan Abel, Oyster Recovery Partnership's executive director. "In all, more shell will be placed in Maryland waters over the next nine months than in the past decade, enough to cover 80 football fields with shell 12 inches deep."
In October, O'Malley announced that the state and its partners produced and planted 1.25 billion oysters this year. In 2010, O'Malley launched the Oyster Restoration and Aquaculture Development Plan in hopes of rejuvenating the state's languishing oyster population.

Read more here:

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Island Creek Oyster Moving Into Retail

Island Creek Oysters is going retail

According to a story by Lauren DiTullio in the Patriot Ledger

Until now,  the easiest way to enjoy Island Creek Oysters was to visit a fine sea food restaurant and order off the  menu. Or if you were adept with a shucking knife to order them through their web-site.

That will soon change as the high profile  aquaculture farm plans to open a retail location in its Duxbury hometown next week.

island creek oyster growers
Island Creek Oystermen hard at work.

The shop is on Parks Street, the home of Bennett Lobster & Seafood, which Island Creek Oysters founder and owner Skip Bennett has operated for some time.

In addition to oysters, the store will sell razor clams, littleneck clams and shrimp prepared using a family recipe. While less known razor clams make for a delightful change from littlenecks and cook up well.

In 2010, Bennett and two Boston restaurant veterans launched the popular dining hotspot Island Creek Oyster Bar at Kenmore Square.

The team is not all commercial. They were very helpful to the Mass Oyster Project in its early days as we sought to become active in oyster restoration. We cannot say enough good things about Skip and his team.

And through the Island Creek Foundation, Bennett has built a shellfish hatchery in Tanzania in an effort to provide more food for Africa.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Restore Aquatic Habitat in Massachusetts- Job Opening

This just in from the Commonwealth's Division of Ecological Restoration.

An important goal of this transition is to quickly restore staff capacity.  Toward that end, we have just posted a vacancy announcement for an Aquatic Habitat Restoration Specialist.  This position will serve as a senior restoration project manager.  The deadline for applications is January 8, 2014.  A copy of the announcement is posted on the DER website home page, and can also be viewed on the Commonwealth’s Employment Opportunities website.  Please help us spread the word to groups, lists, and individuals that might be interested.

Once you are hired- Mass Oyster would like to work with you. There is $100 million in Hurricane Sandy recovery grants waiting to be awarded. It would be great if we could lock arms and bring a piece of that to the Bay State. Mass Oyster cannot do it  alone. We need  the support of the State to capture those funds and create those jobs.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Massachusetts Firm Donates Equipment for Oyster Restoration in New York

We saw this story on the wires and found it bitter-sweet. A Beverly, Massachusetts firm doing great things to help oyster restoration. But not here in Massachusetts. Longtime readers of this blog will see this as a continuation of a long-term trend.


YSI Teams Up With The New York Harbor School And Verizon To Support New York City's Billion Oyster Project   

Beverly, MA - Xylem’s YSI Integrated Systems and Services (ISS) has teamed up with the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School (The Harbor School) and Verizon to collaborate on the Billion Oyster Project (BOP). The project was developed as a long-term oyster restoration project, to restore native oyster species back in to New York Harbor and surrounding estuaries and waterways.

The Billion Oyster Project is a program to restore one billion live oysters into New York Harbor over the next 20 years. The environmental benefits from such a project are countless, but certainly the improvement of water quality as a result of the presence of the oysters, will have a lasting effect on the NY Harbor ecosystem.

The project begins at the oyster hatchery at The Harbor School on Governor’s Island, a public high school with a focus on marine science and marine technology. The Verizon Innovation Program funded an effort at The Harbor School which enables the high school students to track the project in real-time, with underwater video and data collection delivered over Verizon’s 4GLTE network.

“Collaborating with The Harbor School and Verizon, our ISS team helped to pull together a cutting edge solution to address the needs of a real-life challenge,” says Chris McIntire, Senior Vice President and President of Xylem’s Analytics and Treatment businesses. “And working with the students, seeing their enthusiasm as they embrace the science and the technology – you couldn’t help but think that we were planting the seeds for a new generation of environmental stewards or scientists. That was really exciting for all of us at Xylem.”
For YSI, the cutting edge solution started with a highly specialized electronics chest. To meet the requirements of the project, the chest was entirely re-designed by ISS to be completely submersible. It was also ruggedized to be hurricane resistant, as a result of some of the devastation and challenges that came to light in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
ISS then custom designed a system that integrated the EXO Water Quality Sonde (which monitors eight different parameters) and the SonTek Argonaut XR (which provides water velocity and temperature data). Both instruments are hard-wired to the electronics chest, as is the video feed cable. Inside the chest is the datalogger and cellular modem for real-time transmission of the data and the live video feed from the harbor floor. ISS worked closely with the Xylem products teams, as well as the underwater video manufacturer, Wild Goose Imaging, to collaborate on the solution.

The high school students involved in the project can access the data and the video feed at any time through The Harbor School web site. The data will also be made available to the general public, so as to support technology education for others around the globe.
To learn more about YSI Integrated Systems’ range of marine monitoring platforms, visit To also learn more about the complete range of analytics products from Xylem please visit

About Xylem Analytics
Xylem’s analytics businesses are leading manufacturers of premium field, portable, laboratory and online analytical instruments used in water and wastewater, environmental, food and beverage, pharmaceutical and life science applications. The company’s meters, sensors, analyzers and related consumables are used every day by thousands of end-users worldwide to analyze and control quality in countless industrial applications where precise measurement is required. Xylem’s analytics business has been created over the past three years with a series of acquisitions, including OI Analytical, YSI and MJK Automation, which have been added to the core businesses of WTW, SI Analytics, Aanderaa Data Instruments (AADI), Global Water Instrumentation, ebro and Bellingham & Stanley.

About Xylem
Xylem (NYSE: XYL) is a leading global water technology provider, enabling customers to transport, treat, test and efficiently use water in public utility, residential and commercial building services, industrial and agricultural settings. The company does business in more than 150 countries through a number of market-leading product brands, and its people bring broad applications expertise with a strong focus on finding local solutions to the world’s most challenging water and wastewater problems. Xylem is headquartered in White Plains, N.Y., with 2012 annual revenues of $3.8 billion and approximately 12,900 employees worldwide. Xylem has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for the last two years for advancing sustainable business practices and solutions worldwide.
The name Xylem is derived from classical Greek and is the tissue that transports water in plants, highlighting the engineering efficiency of our water-centric business by linking it with the best water transportation of all -- that which occurs in nature. For more information, please visit  at

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Tour of Big Rock Oyster Farm Rocks!

oyster flats big rock oyster cape cod
Fletcher Students on the flats visiting Big Rock Oyster Farm
On Saturday, Oct 26, a group of two dozen students from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy set out for Cape Cod, to meet with Aaron and Graham of Big Rock Oyster Co.

Tour Big Rock Oyster Company   mass Oyster Project  Fletcher School
Low Tide allows for a walk among the oyster cages.

 Big Rock oyster Company Tour   Aaron   Fletcher School
Aaron of Big Rock Oyster explaining the life and challenges of being an oyster rancher.

The group toured Big Rock's farm in the tidal flats and sampled oysters fresh out of the cages while learning about the farming process, regulatory challenges, and business side of the operation. Afterwards, the group visited Big Rock's sorting facility and took advantage of some of the freshly harvested oysters, clams, and conch on offer!
Big Rock Oyster Tour  Tufts Fletcher School of Government
Fletcher Students leaving with greater knowledge and oysters in hand.
The Fletcher School is a graduate school of international affairs at Tufts University; this trip was a fun opportunity for students from China, Ecuador, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Switzerland, Taiwan, and the US to explore and appreciate the local heritage and ecosystems of the place we call home during our studies. Thank you so much to Aaron and Graham for hosting us, and to Mass Oyster Project for connecting us!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Oysters and Pearls

Since Mass Oyster is working to restore oysters, we get lots of pearl questions. (No- we don't want to get the pearls). The oysters we are restoring are the standard Eastern Oyster Crassostrea Virginica. These oysters don't make pearls. Most pearls come from Asia or Australia from a different type of oyster. the Pinctada Maxima is grown in Australia and Tahiti. Personally, I find it hard to tell one type of pearl from another. It appears that the experts in the gem world do to. Below the June Lockhart sidetrack is the story of a group who has gone to Australia to harvest pearls at a source so they have a bona fide reference.

The one thing I do know is that they looked great on June Lockhart in leave it to beaver. Given that she cared about her kids and her world, I am sure she would have been a supporter of oyster restoration to create habitat to improve the fishing and improve ocean water quality. 

Leave it to Beaver Mom Actress June Lockhart in Pearls.
June Lockhart in Pearls


BANGKOK – Oct. 30, 2013 – GIA (Gemological Institute of America) researchers from Thailand, with the assistance of the Paspaley Pearling Company, recently conducted an expedition to Australia’s wild pearl oyster beds, which provided unprecedented opportunity to advance research into differentiating certain nacreous saltwater non-bead cultured pearls from natural pearls. GIA’s pearl research group and others in the pearl trade have focused on this sometimes difficult differentiation for decades. 
In addition to thousands of laboratory analyses over the past few years, a major focus for both  the GIA and Paspaley Pearling Company research teams has been establishing the most important criteria for present and future research: a reliable sample base of natural and cultured pearls of various types. While obtaining a definitive sample base for cultured pearls is straightforward, the rarity of natural pearls makes collecting a substantial sample base challenging.
Oyster and Pearl
Pinctada Maxima Oyster with pears. 

Australia’s wild pearl oyster beds have been fished continuously since the mid-1800’s for Pinctada maxima, the world’s largest species of pearl oyster that has yielded many of the world’s large saltwater natural pearls. GIA sought to conduct research in Australia with Paspaley’s assistance as the country’s seas are home to the world’s last commercially active fishery for wild Pinctada maxima oysters. According to Kenneth Scarratt, GIA managing director for Southeast Asia, several recent expeditions by GIA into the waters off the rugged Northwest Coast resulted in the acquisition of many natural and cultured pearls that have produced excellent data that will enable GIA to establish impeccable test criteria for its pearl identification teams.
“Resolving the issues involved in differentiating natural from saltwater non bead cultured pearls has been a focus of GIA’s research group for some time,” said Scarratt. “Meeting these challenges and using the results to serve GIA’s public benefit mission is what makes this kind of research so rewarding and important.”
A recent expedition that coincided with a Paspaley wild shell collection program focused on gathering large Pinctada maxima shell for use in the Mother of Pearl industry yielded the Institute’s most extraordinary results thus far.
In late September and early October, GIA pearl researchers Artitaya Homkrajae and Areeya Manustrong spent ten days aboard Paspaley’s diving ship MV Marilynne, during which they discovered and extracted 776 natural pearls from 20,488 large wild oysters. A majority of these pearls were small “seed” pearls, with the smallest measuring under 1mm in diameter, and the largest, a rare pearl measuring 16mm diameter. Prior to this expedition, there were few opportunities for gemological laboratories to examine a significant number of undrilled naturalPinctada maxima pearls of confirmed provenance, meaning previously that their origins were determined only by examining their internal structures and provenance ‘assumed’. This sample will provide GIA with a unique and unprecedented opportunity to compare what is understood about natural structures with undrilled pearls known to be natural.
“This was a unique opportunity to gather specimens from an important and well-known source,” said Artitaya Homkrajae, GIA pearl researcher. “Establishing explicit provenance for the samples will support a great deal of further research,” added Areeya Manustrong.
These 776 natural pearls, along with their shells, now reside in GIA’s laboratory in Bangkok. In the coming months, extensive research will be carried out using in-house high resolution real-time microradiography and micro CT imaging, as well as detailed chemical analyses and the application of other test methods. 
As part of GIA’s public benefit mission, a full and detailed report will be prepared and published in the coming months that will help clarify and establish clearer criteria for the interpretation of various data collected during the normal laboratory examination of pearls. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Small Virginia Town Receives Half a Million Dollars for Oyster Restoration

One of the points, we reiterate often to the Massachusetts regulatory authorities is that the Commonwealth is leaving money on the table by not embracing oyster restoration. Here a community of 5000 has tapped the Federal Government for half a million for living shorelines including oyster reef. Massachusetts has 192 miles of coastline. If the scientists reporting rising seas and increased storm intensity are correct, we should not be sitting idly by and letting this opportunity to better prepare our coastal areas slip away. 

ASSATEAGUE — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and local partners are poised to receive and invest $553,425 in the construction of two living shoreline projects and two acres of oyster reef on Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge that will help restore and rebuild the Refuge from impacts associated with Hurricane Sandy.
Chincoteague Map Oyster Restoration
Map of Northern Virginia highlighting Chincoteague


This was confirmed in a recent announcement by the Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell, who stated that $162 million will be invested in 45 restoration and research projects that will better protect Atlantic coast communities from powerful storms, by restoring marshes, wetlands and beaches, rebuilding shorelines, and researching the impacts and modeling mitigation of storm surge impacts.
At Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, located on the Virginia end of Assateague Island, portions of both the Beach Road and the Service Road were extensively impacted by the storm surge and wave energy associated with Sandy and nearly washed out.

The loss of these roads would impact both the tourism associated with access to the ocean beach and the Service’s ability to manage the natural resources on the Refuge.

“This project provides a terrific opportunity to help protect and increase the long-term resilience of both productive natural systems and man-made infrastructure in the face of climate change impacts at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. Living shorelines and oyster restoration work for both people and nature and are truly a 'win-win' approach to climate change adaptation,” said Steve Parker, Director of The Nature Conservancy’s Virginia Coast Reserve.

“The Conservancy is very excited to work with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Park Service, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries to increase the resilience of one of America’s most visited, economically important, and beloved National Wildlife Refuges.”

The two living shorelines and the oyster reefs proposed for construction under this project are intended as natural infrastructure that will increase the resiliency and capacity of the Beach Road and the Service Road to withstand future storms with reduced damage.

“In addition, the restored oysters associated with the living shorelines and the oyster reefs will provide ecosystem services such as nutrient removal, uptake of sediments, water filtration, increased water quality and increased biomass in the two coves, and provision of habitat for other marine organisms,” stated Kevin Holcomb, supervisory wildlife biologist at Chincoteague NWR.

The investments are consistent with President Obama’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force Strategy Report and the Administration’s commitment laid out in the Climate Action Plan to build resilience by restoring natural features along shorelines to help better protect communities from future storms. The Department of the Interior has already invested $480 million in Hurricane Sandy response and recovery efforts since the storm hit last October.

An additional $45 million is being invested in assessments, modeling, coastal barrier mapping, and other projects to provide Federal, State, and local land managers and decision makers the information and tools they need to improve resiliency and prepare for future storms.
A Technical Review Panel of ten experts from eight Interior bureaus and the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration evaluated all 94 submitted projects totaling a requested $541 million.

Using a framework developed by Interior’s Strategic Sciences Group, the panel scored each project within the Sandy impact area based on the ability to strengthen Federal assets and build coastal resilience to withstand future storms. Projects were selected based on their ability to provide measurable restoration outcomes and resilience benefits or useful data or management tools in a short timeframe. A priority was given to projects that will employ youth and veterans.

Jewell also announced that the Department would issue a Request for Proposals on October 29 for an additional $100 million in grant funding under the Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program announced in August. States, local communities, non-profit organizations and other partners can compete for funding for innovative projects under the program, which is being administered by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Information on the competition can be found at

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The service is a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information, visit

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Opportunity to Learn about Shellfish- Oyster Restoration Aquaqculture in Rhode Island

While a small state, Rhode Island is implementing big changes designed to foster aquaculture. This symposium should be quite interesting.


The Future of Shellfish in Rhode Island

12th Annual Ronald C. Baird Sea Grant Science Symposium
November 14, 2013

Water quality, regulations, economics, social trends, habitat, innovation—all these forces contribute to the success or failure of commercial shellfishing and shellfish aquaculture. Rhode Island is developing a shellfish management plan that addresses these issues, and a symposium is bringing together experts from the state, the region, and beyond to discuss them.

Join us at the Radisson Hotel, Warwick, R.I., for the 2013 Ronald C. Baird Sea Grant Science Symposium, “The Future of Shellfish in Rhode Island: Providing sustainable seafood, economic opportunities, and ecosystem benefits,” to discuss the current and the potential value—economic and environmental—of shellfish to Rhode Island. The sessions will focus on Restoration and Public Aquaculture, Commercial Aquaculture, Commercial Wild Harvest, Water Quality, and the “Go Local” Movement. Registration is $45. Student rate and industry scholarships are available at $20. To register, please contact Deborah Lafen at (401) 874-6645 or download the registration.

FIELD TRIPS 11/15: There will be field trips available on November 15 to your choice of the Matunuck Oyster Farm, Roger WIlliams University's Blount Shellfish Hatchery, or the restored Town Pond in Portsmouth. For details on the field trips, please visit the website.

The 2013 Baird Symposium is funded by Rhode Island Sea Grant, the URI Coastal Institute, and the Rhode Island Shellfish Management Plan.

This event is being coordinated in partnership with representatives from the University of Rhode Island Coastal Resources Center, Rhode Island Sea Grant, University of Rhode Island, Roger Williams University, R.I. Department of Environmental Management, R.I. Coastal Resources Management Council, The Nature Conservancy, East Coast Shellfish Growers Association, and the local shellfishing industry.