Edgartown, Oak Bluffs Hatch Plan for 750,000 Oysters

In an effort to lower nitrogen amounts in Sengekontacket Pond, Edgartown and Oak Bluffs are embarking on a yearly project to grow oysters in the Major’s Cove area of the pond.

In Edgartown, shellfish constable Paul Bagnall told selectmen Tuesday that the shellfish committee is proposing spending $24,000 on 250,000 oyster seed for the pond. The original plan was to spend $48,500 on 500,000 oysters, but the amount was reduced because of the number of articles submitted for town meeting.

Chilmark Scallopers Husband Resources

Bay scallopers in Chilmark are being asked to concentrate on Nashaquitsa Pond until early next month in order to make the most efficient use of a healthy crop of scallops this year.

The Chilmark selectmen voted Tuesday to close Menemsha Pond to scalloping from Nov. 21 through Dec. 3, and increase the daily limit in Quitsa to three struck bushels. The selectmen also agreed to open the area outside of Chocker’s Creek from the eastern buoy defining the closed area to the town line beginning Nov. 21.

Baiting the Hook for New Fish Business, Owner Is Good Catch

A smiling Alec Gale hops onto his 52-foot steel fishing boat, The Retriever. “We’ll see what happens today. Something always goes wrong,” he says. It’s 7:30 a.m. and Al has already been up for two hours. He spent the early part of the day with his eight-month-old son Riley. “It’s my only quiet time,” he says. Now he is bounding around his boat, starting one of its three engines, unhooking dock lines and moving the neck of a truck crane around.

Aquaculture Efforts Yield Sweet Results

The Katama Bay oyster is the talk of Island raw bars. Lovers of seafood now have a local oyster available through most of the year. This Island oyster is making its way across the eastern seaboard to Washington, D.C., New York and Boston.

Vineyard's Sweetest Fishing Season

Vineyard Haven and Oak Bluffs shellfishermen saw a banner start to the bay scalloping season, and they share their reason why: Lagoon Pond.

Derek Cimeno, shellfish constable for Tisbury, is watching shellfishermen surrounded in bay scallops. "Six hundred bushels of bay scallops were taken in the first two days by family shellfishermen," Mr. Cimeno said.

Shellfishermen File Application for Offshore Blue Mussel Farm

Several shellfishermen and fishermen are taking a first step on a long road to raise blue mussels for market in Vineyard waters.

Rick Karney, director of the Martha's Vineyard Shellfish Group, the project's principal investigator, has applied for a state grant to fund half of a $28,730 feasibility project.Blue mussels are a highly prized shellfish. Island consumers buy plenty of them in local fish markets, but nearly all the mussels come from Canada.

Researchers Find Blue Mussels Flourish in Island Experiment

On this November morning, the Menemsha lobster boat Shearwater has made its way three and a half miles south of Noman’s Land.

Noman’s tall cliffs rise above the treacherous rocky waters. Sea birds are adrift in the moving current farther north.

Waves roll from the open ocean and raise and lower the boat in a gentle fashion, like a mother rocking a sleeping child. The sky is blue and metallic; the color of the sea beneath is a darker version of the sky. A gentle cold breeze freshens. The bow points towards Spain.

The Fishermen

Island fish, like Island tourists, come and go with the seasons. Striped bass, bluefish, false albacore, bonito and scup and summer flounder all migrate.

Yet there is one species of fish that once were caught here year-round. Winter flounder stayed in Island waters through the changing seasons.

Next week the Chilmark Public Library is hosting a forum with a top New England authority on the raising of juvenile winter flounder.

Chilmark Sees Shellfish Restoration as Success

As the Chilmark shellfish department wraps up its first summer, efforts at spearheading restoration projects have been successful. Selectman Warren Doty, chairman of the board and liaison to the department, reported a low mortality rate among planted scallops and a very high production rate.

“It has been a very successful season,” he said.

To date, 100,000 scallop seed have been set to grow in an upweller, purchased by the town this spring and located in Menemsha, as well as in spat bags and pearl nets.

Pond Stock Rising

Pond Stock Rising

The late Foster Silva, longtime superintendent for The Trustees of Reservations on Chappaquiddick who loved to tell perfect strangers that he had received his degree from Katama University, had an opinion on the subject of bay scallops. Cape Pogue scallops, he said, were the sweetest. No arguments.

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