Update on Oyster Gardening Project

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In a previous post I mentioned that I had started an oyster garden in early July. The oysters were purchased from a party that grows oysters from seed (from the hatchery) until the animals reach roughly the size of a quarter. I got a bag of 300 of these quarter-size oysters, and put them in a sealed mesh bag that I placed inside of an oyster float. In the two months since I started the garden, the oysters have grown about an inch. Some oysters are larger than others. Because a few were still not big enough to be placed directly into the float, all of the oysters were kept in the mesh bag, where they will continue to grow for a few more weeks.

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When the float was brought up for cleaning most recently, there were three blue crabs that had to be removed. Blue crabs prey on the oysters and in fact, 14 from my batch had been pried open and left for dead, presumably by crabs (oysters pictured below).

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The oysters will go dormant and stop growing in the winter months, as the water temperatures fall. The oysters need to grow at least another inch- until they reach 3 inches- to be edible, likely around late next summer or early fall. For now, they are doing their part to filer water in the creek and improve water quality.

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