Oyster Castles

Posted by Caroline Hershey

If you have been to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge this summer, you may have noticed these strange looking constructions in the water along the road at Tom’s Cove. They are called oyster castles and serve two purposes. To act as protection for the road during storms and as a matrix for seed oysters to attach and grow. They are strange looking when viewed at low tide.

I thought they would have to seed the oyster spat but Dan says there is enough spat floating around in the water to seed them naturally. Dan helped install some of these at Greenbackville through the Chincoteague Field Station and it has been very educational. If you haven’t seen these, take a look at these photos. Made out of similar material as cinder blocks but with much higher calcium content.

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Completely under water at high tide.

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