State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2007NJ141B
Title: Restored oyster reef habitat use by the American Eel (Anquilla rostrata) in the Lower Delaware Bay
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2007
End Date: 2/29/2008
Congressional District: 6th
Focus Categories: Ecology, Conservation, Methods
Keywords: Eastern oyster (crassostrea virginica), yellow phase American eels, restored oyster reefs, oyster aquaculture
Principal Investigator: Bushek, David; Taylor, Jaclyn (Rutgers University)
Federal Funds: $ 5,000
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 13,075
Abstract: The Eastern Oyster, Crassostrea virginica, is a "keystone species" of the Delaware Bay that is strongly linked to the history and socio-economic structure of the surrounding communities in New Jersey. Post-World War II technological improvements facilitated a rapid expansion of the oyster fishery until two virulent oyster pathogens (Dermo and MSX) decimated the industry. A sustainable population remains and supports a small but viable fishery. Recently, however, five consecutive years of recruitment failures have nearly forced managers to shut down the fishery to protect the remaining oyster population (Powell et al. 2006). To help correct this problem, several efforts are underway to increase oyster abundance. These efforts are focused on increasing oyster production for the oyster fishery and the socio-economic structure it supports.

Progress/Completion Report, PDF

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