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The Tuckerton Oyster reef was established in 2016 in the Little Egg Harbor region of Barnegat Bay. This multi-partner effort has resulted in planting about 7 million oysters on the site and is currently the largest oyster restoration site in Barnegat Bay. Oysters provide habitat for marine species and filter water. This page contains descriptions of the monitoring methods used to determine the impact of the oyster reef on the Barnegat Bay ecosystem.
In 2016, the Tuckerton Reef was created in lower Barnegat Bay
Oysters are monitored from our subtidal reef using patent tongs which survey one square meter of oyster bed bottom. Surveys are performed in May and October of each year to monitor changes in oyster density, growth and mortality.
Oysters create vertical relief on an otherwise flat bottom and can create habitat for fish and other invertebrates. Our monitoring program surveys the fish and small invertebrate community created from these oyster beds.
A seasonal water monitoring station at the Tuckerton reef monitors conditions that affect oyster filtration capacity such as temperature, turbidity, and chlorophyll. We use these to estimate how much water the oysters can filter and relate this to removal of nitrogen.
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