Your data on MRCVSonline
The nature of the services provided by Vision Media means that we might obtain certain information about you.
Please read our Data Protection and Privacy Policy for details.

In addition, (with your consent) some parts of our website may store a 'cookie' in your browser for the purposes of
functionality or performance monitoring.
Click here to manage your settings.
If you would like to forward this story on to a friend, simply fill in the form below and click send.

Your friend's email:
Your email:
Your name:
 
 
Send Cancel

British oyster restoration project thriving
"Oysters make a huge impact to the environment, including providing an essential habitat to important species" - Celine Gamble, project manager ZSL.

Oyster nurseries providing important habitat for other marine life.

The Wild Oysters Project has announced that it has found over 27,000 marine animals living among its native oyster nurseries.

This means that alongside restoring and helping oysters, the project is supporting a wide variety of marine life in coastal regions across the UK.

Aiming to restore coastal waters around the UK, the project is bringing back native oysters after their population declined by a whopping 95 per cent. 

Blue Marine Foundation, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and British Marine are collaborating on The Wild Oysters Project, and have set up over 140 oyster nurseries and 4,000 oysters in River Conwy (Wales), Firth of Clyde (Scotland) and Tyne and Wear (England).

One year on from the implementation of the project, 65 species have been discovered living alongside the oysters. These include the Critically Endangered European eel, the common prawn and shore crab.

Restoration project manager Matt Uttley, from Blue Marine, explained: “It is fantastic that we are now observing an increase in biodiversity around the nurseries. Native oysters are ecosystem engineers, meaning they create a complex 3D habitat that provides feeding and nursery grounds for other species. 

“Where we find wild populations of native oysters, we also find an increased number of other species. 

“Given that native oyster beds are so crucial to marine life, yet are one of the most threatened marine habitats in Europe, the work of the Wild Oysters project to restore these lost habitats is essential.”

Mature oysters in the nurseries have now begun to release the next generation of oysters to the seabed. These youngsters will settle across the three oyster reefs and continue the work of restoring the biodiversity of the coastline of Britain.

Celine Gamble, wild oysters project manager ZSL, commented on its success: “In a bid to restore native oyster populations, and in turn work towards the return of healthy, resilient coastal waters, we placed nurseries filled with oysters underneath marina pontoons. 

“So far, with the support of over 200 local community volunteers, who dedicated have over 2,000 hours, we have already seen oysters have a hugely positive impact, in what is a really short amount of time.

“Despite their small size oysters make a huge impact to their environment, including providing an essential habitat to important species such as butter fish, corkwing wrasse, crabs, amphipod crustaceans, blue mussels, rock cook fish and worm pipefish. 

“We have been delighted to find all of these living alongside the native oyster nurseries we established, within just a year of us starting the project.

“We can estimate, in just one year, the 4,000 oysters have now filtered out pollutants in almost 98 million litres of water, the equivalent of almost half a million bathtubs of water. They are the superheroes of our oceans.”

 

Images (C) ZSL/The Wild Oyster Project - images taken at Conwy Bay

Become a member or log in to add this story to your CPD history

Laura Muir wins gold at Commonwealth Games

News Story 1
 Veterinary surgeon and Olympic silver-medalist Laura Muir scooped the gold medal in the 1500m final Commonwealth Games on Sunday.

Winning Scotland's 12th title of the games, Muir finished in four minutes 2.75 seconds, collecting her second medal in 24 hours.

Dr Muir commented on her win: "I just thought my strength is in my kick and I just tried to trust it and hope nobody would catch me. I ran as hard as I could to the line.

"It is so nice to come here and not just get one medal but two and in such a competitive field. Those girls are fast. It means a lot." 

Click here for more...
News Shorts
Views sought on NOAH Compendium

Users of the National Office of Animal Health (NOAH) Compendium app and website are being asked to share their views on how it can be improved.

In a new survey, users are asked about some suggested future developments, such as notifications for new and updated datasheets, sharing links to datasheets, and enhanced search functionality.

It comes after NOAH ceased publication of the NOAH Compendium book as part of its sustainability and environmental commitments. The website and the app will now be the main routes to access datasheets and view any changes.