Posted on December 10, 2010 by Elizabeth
Oyster shells like these were used to create an artificial reef off of Governors Island
Today’s Brooklyn Daily Eagle updated readers on efforts to bring the oyster back to New York City.
Did you know that there was once 350,000 square miles of oyster reefs in the waterways of New York City? In fact, these tasty mollusks were farmed in the East River as recently as the turn of the 20th century. Overfishing and environmental degradation eventually led to the decline of oysters in New York Harbor and now there are none left.
New York/New Jersey Baykeeper is working to change that by bring the oyster back to New York Harbor. In collaboration with the Army Corps of Engineers, they are creating six artificial oyster reefs to be placed in waters around New York Harbor and up the Hudson River. One of these reefs was placed off of Governors Island in October.
The reefs, which are approximately 15 feet by 30 feet, were designed to mimic natural reefs as much as possible. During the next two years scientists will use the reefs as research platforms to characterize oyster reef development survival and growth of the oysters themselves as well as ecosystem services provided by the reefs.
The artificial reef isn’t the only oyster restoration project happening on Governors Island. The Urban Assembly New York Harbor School is growing oysters that will be placed in experimental sites, including this one, around the Harbor.
Filed under: Media | Tagged: Harbor School, New York/New Jersey Baykeeper, oysters | Leave a Comment »
Posted on January 6, 2010 by Betty
Oyster midden on Governors Island
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) has commissioned five teams to propose harbor infrastructure solutions to help make New York City more resilient to the effects of rising sea levels and climate change. This project is part workshop, part upcoming exhibit, and it’s called “Rising Currents.” From our vantage point in the middle of New York Harbor, we’ve been following their progress with great interest.
One of the teams led by SCAPE Studio and Kate Orff, is exploring “Oyster-tecture” – using oyster reefs to grow an ecosytem while attenuating waves from storm and flooding events. In fact, the New York Harbor School is already piloting an oyster restoration project here on Governors Island. The underwater oyster incubator has the endearing name of FLUPSY (flowing upweller system). It houses thousands of baby oysters in protective structures until they are big enough to go out into the harbor on their own. For a fascinating peek inside the FLUPSY, check out the short video below featuring Pete Malinowski of the New York Harbor School. MoMA’s blog, Inside/Out ,will also fill you in on the progress of each team. Better yet, you can go see the teams yourself at an Open House this Saturday, January 9, 2010 from 2PM – 6PM at the P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center. You may never think about the harbor the same way again.
Filed under: Art on the Island | Tagged: FLUPSY, MoMA, oysters, Rising Currents | 1 Comment »