Oysters: Delicious and Invaluable

Every single person in this country has a vested interest in the viability of our coastal communities. These coastal communities are home to a growing number of Americans, support our food and energy needs, and contribute millions to our annual economy. The coast also serves as cultural touchstones for so many of us—who can forget their first time seeing the ocean or wriggling their toes in the sand?

This is one of the many reasons The Nature Conservancy in Texas has worked hard to restore Half Moon Reef, a historic oyster reef located in Matagorda Bay. Oysters are one of the Gulf’s most important inhabitants—those little bivalves are not only delicious, they also act as a natural water filtration system. The Gulf of Mexico is the final outlet for 207 estuaries and more than 30 major river systems in this country, including the mighty Mississippi River; oysters strip nutrients and impurities from those millions of gallons of freshwater flowing daily into the Gulf. With Half Moon Reef, we plan to not only construct a viable habitat for oysters (and various other marine life), but to help restore the Texas Gulf Coast to ensure protection against hurricanes and tropical storms well into the future.

The Conservancy has previously constructed new oyster beds and restored existing reefs along the upper and lower Texas coast, but the 45-acre Half Moon Reef will be the Conservancy’s first reef constructed from the ground up. It’s also one of the largest restoration projects around the country, said Boze Hancock, research scientist for the Conservancy’s Global Marine Team.”We are not [just] restoring oysters, we are restoring habitat,” he added.

Intrigued by Half Moon Reef? Want to learn more? Hear about all the incredible details in this video!

 

photo: Oyster Lake © Jerod Foster

93 comments

Carrie-Anne Brown
Carrie-Anne Brownabout a year ago

thanks for sharing :)

Teresa W.
Teresa W.1 years ago

No, thanks. I've eaten only one oyster in my life, which was many years ago, and I don't want to continue!

Bea W.
Bea Wilson1 years ago

In my partying years (when I was much younger), they went down pretty good with boilermakers and tabasco sauce. I'm so glad that now I know they are very useful in helping restore our habitat. No more oysters and boilermakers.

Colin Hope
Colin Hope2 years ago

Thanks for sharing!!

Geoff P.
Geoff P.2 years ago

Oysters deep fried in batter wonderful

Masahiko E.
.2 years ago

ty

Vita Pagh
Vita P.2 years ago

Thank you for posting.

John chapman
John chapman2 years ago

Oysters serve a multitude of purposes.

The reefs protect the shore, but they also serve to protect young fish until they're reade to venture out on their own.

Ruth Ann W.
Ruth Ann W.2 years ago

Yes, this is not so much about eating oysters but what little powerhouses of ocean cleaners, therefore how important they are to our ecosystem.

Summerannie Moon
Summerannie M.2 years ago

I love oysters however l think that certain other breeders discovered some oysters died at a certain kind of disease which annihilated the entire crop or production where he is facing severe hardship. It was discovered that all other otters flourished but it was discovered after the fact and with many tests that this particular oyster is prone to dying leaving a totally empty shell.
I thought that was interesting to read about and file in my trivia file.