ORP Plantings Harris Creek 2011_2013_smallLARGEST OYSTER RESTORATION EFFORT ON THE EAST COAST

reeflogo_webThe Oyster Recovery Partnership has teamed up with state and federal partners in a concerted effort to accelerate the restoration of native oyster reefs and achieve an ambitious goal of twenty Bay tributaries restored by 2025.  Harris Creek, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, is the first targeted restoration location, and by itself represents the largest oyster restoration effort ever conducted in the Chesapeake Bay and East Coast.

Major activities include rebuilding the reef substrate structure, planting newly constructed reefs with baby oysters to jump start the local oyster population and monitoring to evaluate project performance. As planned, billions of baby oysters will be placed within the protected sanctuary in Harris Creek, rebuilding more than 370 acres of reef.

 To date, we have already rebuilt 110 acres. This project will also establish a blueprint to expand large scale oyster restoration efforts to other tributaries in the Bay. Only healthy estuarine habitats will support the rich variety and abundance of life once found in the Bay, as well as provide benefits to people economically, socially and culturally.
ORP is seeking to raise $1,000,000 toward oyster restoration in Harris Creek and other locations. All donations will be matched with $3 for every $1 we raise through a public-private partnership with the State of Maryland and The Nature Conservancy. For every $5,000 raised, ORP can recycle 100 bushels of shells and plant 500,000 oysters. Funding is our only holdback as ORP and our partners have the capacity to produce 2 billion oysters and plant 500 acres per year.

We hope that you will support this vital environmental program and help us return the Bay to population levels last seen decades ago.