ST. MARY’S CITY, Md. – Last fall, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) teamed up with The Pew Charitable Trusts and launched a program to purchase surplus oysters from farmers to plant in waters in New England, the mid-Atlantic, and Washington state. The Supporting Oyster Aquaculture and Restoration (SOAR) initiative will pay out $2 million to more than 100 shellfish companies to preserve over 200 jobs. Additionally, THC will plant about 5 million oysters across 20 restoration sites.

On Tuesday and Thursday this week, January 26 and 28, 600 bushels of oysters will be planted in the St. Mary’s River Shellfish Sanctuary under the SOAR initiative.

“The demand for oysters plummeted in 2020 due to the closing of restaurants and raw bars and this has left many growers with little income and a surplus of oversize oysters,” said Bob Lewis, executive director of the St. Mary’s River Watershed Association. “This win-win solution keeps our oyster farms functioning, allows them to move product off bottom needed for the next year’s crop, and puts those oysters on our sanctuaries where they can filter water and reproduce.”

The oysters will be planted along the eastern shoreline just west of Martins Point, an area adjacent to the Nach-T Farm property, as indicated by the white arrow on the map above.

SMRWA Publishes Basic Information on PFAS Toxins in St. Mary’s

Last month, we are launched a webpage containing information on PFAS chemical toxins here in St. Mary’s County along with dozens of links to other resources. We provide some answers to important questions such as what are PFAS, what are your risks, and where can I get my water tested. Click here to view our PFAS webpage.