Watermen Push Back Against Oyster Shell Project - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Watermen Push Back Against Oyster Shell Project

Posted:
CAMBRIDGE, Md.-  This spring, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources is planning to put fossilized oyster shells on the bottom of the Little Choptank in Dorchester County, but watermen and local lawmakers have concerns.

Wednesday night, those groups gathered at Cambridge South Dorchester High School to protest against the project in a hearing.  They are concerned that by putting down a thick layer of rock and shell, the existing oysters and crabs in the area will be buried, and the jagged material would make the area unharvestable. 

The shells first arrived four months ago from Florida, and have already been spread in Harris Creek.  The Department of Natural Resources believes the layer of hard shell will provide a strong base where oysters can naturally grow.  But the catch is, not many watermen share that belief.

"It should be more of a natural process, not bringing in shells from 1,400 miles away or using granite which isn't even found on the bottom anyway," said Scott Todd, President of the Dorchester County Seafood Harvesters Association.

Todd believes if the project begins this month as scheduled, it could have a devastating effect on the fishery in the Little Choptank.

"The crabs that are there, we've had a cold winter, they're probably still a little sluggish and if this happens in the next couple of weeks, it's gonna cover up what crabs are laying there." said Todd.

Another group frustrated by the prospect is the Dorchester County Council, who have sent letters to the DNR protesting the project.  Council president Jay Newcomb says they are ready to fight it if the project becomes too close to a reality.

"Council has discussed injunction but we'll wait and see what comes out of this public hearing tonight." said Newcomb.

At Wednesday night's hearing, some watermen proposed to instead move the project to the north side of James Island, an area not often fished, eliminating much of the debate.

As of Wednesday, planting in the Little Choptank is set to begin within the month.


  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Ocean City Prepares for Memorial Day

    Ocean City Prepares for Memorial Day

    May 25, 2018 9:24 PM2018-05-26 01:24:00 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 9:24 PM EDT2018-05-26 01:24:50 GMT
    Memorial Day Weekend is the day resort towns on Delmarva wait all year for. Tourists arrive, lots of them.
    Ocean City is gearing up for yet another busy summer season.
    More
    Memorial Day Weekend is the day resort towns on Delmarva wait all year for. Tourists arrive, lots of them.
    Ocean City is gearing up for yet another busy summer season.
    More
  • Ellendale Woman Arrested for Multiple Charges

    Ellendale Woman Arrested for Multiple Charges

    May 26, 2018 10:26 PM2018-05-27 02:26:00 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 10:27 PM EDT2018-05-27 02:27:55 GMT
    ELLENDALE, Del.- An Ellendale woman has been charged by the Ellendale and Milton police departments after being pulled over this week. Ellendale Police say Ukemia Parker was wanted on felony theft charges by the Milton Police Department when the EllendaleMore
    ELLENDALE, Del.- An Ellendale woman has been charged by the Ellendale and Milton police departments after being pulled over this week. Ellendale Police say Ukemia Parker was wanted on felony theft charges by the Milton Police Department when the EllendaleMore
  • Pennsylvania Man Arrested in Seaford as an Out-of-State Fugitive

    Pennsylvania Man Arrested in Seaford as an Out-of-State Fugitive

    May 26, 2018 6:27 PM2018-05-26 22:27:00 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 9:56 PM EDT2018-05-27 01:56:34 GMT
    A Sussex County traffic stop leads to a Pennsylvania man arrested because of an active warrant for robbery.More
    A Sussex County traffic stop leads to a Pennsylvania man arrested because of an active warrant for robbery.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Motorcyclist Dead in Ocean City Crash

    Motorcyclist Dead in Ocean City Crash

    May 26, 2018 3:45 PM2018-05-26 19:45:00 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 3:45 PM EDT2018-05-26 19:45:32 GMT
    OCEAN CITY, Md.--The Ocean City Police Department says a motorcyclist dead after a crash near 77th street. According to the department, officers were dispatched to the area of 77th Street and Coastal Highway around 12:30 p.m. The department says they wereMore
    OCEAN CITY, Md.--The Ocean City Police Department says a motorcyclist dead after a crash near 77th street. According to the department, officers were dispatched to the area of 77th Street and Coastal Highway around 12:30 p.m. The department says they wereMore
  • Seaford Traffic Stop Leads to Drug Charges

    Seaford Traffic Stop Leads to Drug Charges

    May 25, 2018 9:49 PM2018-05-26 01:49:00 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 10:38 PM EDT2018-05-26 02:38:58 GMT
    (L) Larry Milburn, 52 of Delmar Del. (R) Theresa Trice, 50 of Laurel, Del.(L) Larry Milburn, 52 of Delmar Del. (R) Theresa Trice, 50 of Laurel, Del.
    (L) Larry Milburn, 52 of Delmar Del. (R) Theresa Trice, 50 of Laurel, Del.(L) Larry Milburn, 52 of Delmar Del. (R) Theresa Trice, 50 of Laurel, Del.
    Seaford Police said they arrested two people after police were conducting a traffic stop and found them to be in possession of 50 bags of heroin.More
    Seaford Police said they arrested a Delmar man after they were conduction a traffic stop and found him to be in possession of 50 bags of heroin. More
  • Thunderbirds To Take Flight & Headline 2018 OC Air Show

    Thunderbirds To Take Flight & Headline 2018 OC Air Show

    May 25, 2018 12:33 PM2018-05-25 16:33:00 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 12:54 PM EDT2018-05-25 16:54:54 GMT
    USAF Thunderbirds and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Photo Credit: OC Air ShowUSAF Thunderbirds and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Photo Credit: OC Air Show
    USAF Thunderbirds and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Photo Credit: OC Air ShowUSAF Thunderbirds and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Photo Credit: OC Air Show
    OCEAN CITY, Md. -- The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will take flight in this year's Ocean City Air Show.More
    The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will take flight in this year's Ocean City Air Show.More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices