In March we announced that we were taking donations for a reef project. We are thrilled to share that on June 6, we met up with Friends of the Rappahannock at the marina, loaded up two boats, and headed to the restoration site in Meachim Creek to kick-off this reef project!
We ended up taking seventeen bushels of live oysters, which came out to about 3,000-3,200 oysters. We also threw in four bushels of oyster shell we’ve collected over time thanks to folks returning their shells to us. 3,000 oysters represents about half of what we are currently planning to move from the farm to the reef, so we’ll have one or two more trips in the near future to finish up (let us know if you want to help).
It was important to get them there at this time of year, as we wanted to make them available for wild oyster larvae to set on and establish a new permanent living oyster habitat. Wild oyster larvae start setting over the summer and love to make other oyster shells as their home. We hope that this will be the start of a bustling habitat in Meachim Creek that will also help stabilize the ecology in the creek.
Many thanks to everyone who donated to this project. It has made a huge difference for us and given us some stability while allowing us to do the good for the environment that we exist in part to do. If you've been thinking about donating and haven’t gotten to it, we are still accepting donations at this website. The next 3,000 oysters are currently unsponsored and donations help us replace the revenue we’ve lost due to COVID and by not selling these oysters. One day we hope we’re big enough that we can easily afford to regularly donate oysters to reef projects, but right now, we’re still a tIny family farm trying to find solid ground.
In more exciting news, we are finalizing a lease off of Belle Isle State Park that we’ll be partnering with Friends of the Rappahannock on as well. They are already working on a living shoreline project at Belle Isle, so the ability to establish an oyster restoration site in the same area is a great opportunity to expand their education and good works for the Rappahannock River and in turn, the Chesapeake Bay.