Saving Native Oysters

SAVING NATIVE OYSTERS

Over the last 10 years, thousands of students and citizens have worked together with non-profits and governmental organizations to build oyster reefs in the Lynnhaven and to stock millions of reproductive oysters to the reefs. These community-raised oysters reproduce in the river, thus their babies also contribute to the Lynnhaven’s impressive developing oyster population. After only a decade of restoration activities, I am delighted to be able to report that all of this effort is working! Ten years ago, the Lynnhaven’s oyster population was estimated to be at about 1% of historic abundance, and recent calculations estimate that we may have already increased the Lynnhaven’s population to as much as 10% of historic abundance. That is a 10-fold increase in 10 years.

There is a heated debate underway right now with some parties favoring the introduction of a non-native oyster species to Chesapeake Bay waters. The Suminoe oyster, Crassostrea ariakensis, is the oyster species under consideration. If this asian oyster species is introduced into Chesapeake Bay and invades the Lynnhaven River (a likely scenario if the oyster is introduced), the asian oysters will surely hinder the restoration of our native oysters because the Suminoe oyster interferes with native oyster reproduction, undermining the laudable oyster restoration progress in the Lynnhaven. In addition to jeopardizing our native oyster restoration efforts, the Suminoe oyster harbors human pathogens moreso than our native oyster, posing more risk for human consumption, and the Suminoe oyster may cause increased oyster disease risks to our existing native oysters. For these, and several additional reasons, Lynnhaven River NOW, together with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Oyster Reef Keepers of Virginia, and all of the nearby Mid-Atlantic states are saying “no” to introducing Crassostrea ariakensis to the Cheapeake Bay.

Thank you for continuing to value and advance native oyster restoration in the Lynnhaven River!

Click Here to read Lynnhaven River NOW’s
letter to the Army Corps of Engineers.

EVENTS CALENDAR

June 2019

Bird Walk at Pleasure House Point

June 1, 2019
07:30 AM - 09:30 AM

**Canceled due to impending weather**Join us on Saturday, June 1 at 7:30-9:30am at Pleasure House Point, one of the major stopovers of migratory birds on the Atlantic Flyway, to take a walk through the property in search of birds. What better way to go bird watching than with an avid Audubon birder at this ideal location! Free of charge. Email office@lrnow.org or call 757-962-5398 to register

Discover VB: Osprey Survey with Reese Lukei and Robert Brown

June 5, 2019
09:00 AM



Discover Virginia Beach Osprey Survey with Reese Lukei and Robert Brown 9 a.m.

Wednesday, June 5
Narrows Parking lot at the end of 64th Street
First Landing State Park 
$7 admission per car
To register e-mail Terri Gorman, Terri@lrnow.org, or call  (757) 962-5398****only 10 spots available

You don’t need a boat to see these ospreys!  Bring your binoculars and take a walk along 64th Street from the Narrows at First Landing State Park and help survey the osprey population there.  Every year in June raptor expert Reese Lukei and Lynnhaven River Now member Robert Brown, who keeps almost daily tabs on the dozen or so nests in that vicinity, tally the active nests and their young.  This is a unique opportunity to learn about and see the many ospreys that nest the natural way in trees and snags, instead of out on the water on man-made platforms and navigational structures.   Lukei estimates that 10 percent of the osprey population on the Lynnhaven River nest in this area of the park.



Don't forget to wear comfortable shoes and insect repellent!

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