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Oyster culture activities in the Gulf

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An informational exchange on oyster culture activities in the Gulf of Mexico region will be held on Thursday, Oct. 11 from 3-6 p.m. at the Senator George Kirkpatrick Marine Lab in Cedar Key.

Mark Berrigan, with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Aquaculture will start off the session with a discussion on how fishery enhancement methods can be applied to extensive oyster cultivation. A review of oyster aquaculture efforts on Florida’s Gulf coast will be given by Leslie Sturmer with the University of Florida IFAS Shellfish Aquaculture Extension Program. Bill Walton with Auburn University’s Shellfish Lab will speak about efforts in developing oyster culture in Alabama.

Dr. Walton’s work focuses on evaluating the feasibility and cost effectiveness of aquaculture gear for raising oysters, testing of various culture methods to improve oyster quality and assessing potential markets for a high-end branded Gulf oyster.

Louisiana’s traditional oyster fishery, which involves the use of public seed grounds and private leases, will be discussed by John Supan with Louisiana State University.  Dr. Supan will also introduce LSU’s efforts in developing disease-resistance strains, producing triploid oysters for high summertime meat yield, testing of oyster cultch materials and evaluating off-bottom culture.  

     For more information, contact Leslie Sturmer at (352) 543-5057 or LNST@ufl.edu.