Maryland could be banned from dredging Man O’ War Shoal

State legislation could ban the Maryland Department of Natural Resources from dredging the Chesapeake Bay’s Man O’ War Shoal for shells destined to become homes for new baby oysters elsewhere.

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In recent years, the harvest of native oysters in the Chesapeake Bay has fallen to 1 percent of what it was during the 19th century, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Since 2004, the state’s Department of Natural Resources has established sanctuary areas of the bay where the harvest of wild oysters is prohibited in order to protect the remaining population.

The proposed legislation ‘ one set that would take effect upon passage and another bill that would commence in June’ would prevent the Department of Natural Resources from extracting oyster shells from the historic reef, located in Baltimore County near the mouth of the Patapsco River.

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  • Author: Charlie Youngmann
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Article: Feds give qualified OK to dredge oyster shells from Man O’ War Shoal

After years of scrutiny, federal regulators have given a qualified green light to a controversial Maryland plan to dredge old oyster shells from an ancient reef near Baltimore ‘ a project intended to enhance oyster habitat elsewhere in the Chesapeake Bay, but also to help the sagging commercial fishery.

The Baltimore District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued a provisional permit on May 17 to the state Department of Natural Resources to take up to 5 million bushels of shells from Man O’ War Shoal just outside the mouth of the Patapsco River and use the shell to replenish or rebuild oyster reefs at other Bay locations.

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  • Date: Published by Bay Journal Media, Bay Journal informs the public about issues and events affecting the Chesapeake Bay.
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