NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — The Lafayette River has become the first of five Virginia rivers to have its oyster population recover, having met state and federal goals.
The Virginian-Pilot reports that volunteers gathered to mark the milestone Monday, tossing hundreds of shells covered with baby oysters into the river.
Virginia and Maryland entered into the Chesapeake Bay Agreement in 2014, with the goal of restoring 10 bay waterways with at least 10 billion oysters by 2025. But restoring the oyster population is just a piece of a larger effort to improve the health of the bay’s tidal rivers.
Chris Moore with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation says they’re starting to see biodiversity that hasn’t been seen for some time.
A river in Maryland earned the same recovered status earlier this year.