Today, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists along with Louisiana Sea Grant scientists, deployed more than 100 million oyster larvae and 500,000 oyster spat (or oyster larvae larger than one-quarter inch). This joint effort between LDWF and LSG, is part of a $500,000 grant provided to Louisiana State University to help rehabilitate vital oyster grounds impacted by hurricanes in the last six years.
The oyster larvae and spat were released in the Hackberry Bay Public Oyster Seed Reservation, located in north Barataria Bay. The specimens were deployed on test plots of reef to enable biologists to track progress.
This effort is the first of many ventures to help rehabilitate Louisiana’s oyster grounds. The state plans to institute similar deployments of larvae and spat on other public grounds and private leases.
Prior to the Deepwater Horizon incident in 2009 data indicates that Louisiana produces approximately one-third of all oysters harvested in the US and 50 percent of oysters harvested in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb, or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.