Blanketing opinions that I'll probably regret soon.

Monday, September 18, 2006

My new pets are edible hermaphrodites.

My love for oysters is no secret, but now it's taken a new tack. I spent the better part of Sunday morning at the Cheseapeake Bay Foundation's environmental center learning how to properly care for my new pets: oysters.

"CBF's oyster restoration program provides citizens with the tools and information needed to help restore native oysters to the Bay. Until the 1980s, oysters supported the most valuable fishery in the Bay.

Today, as a result of decades of pollution, over-harvesting, and disease, the Bay's native oyster population is merely about 2% of historic levels.

Yet they remain an important part of the Bay's ecology."

CBF had us watch a 30 minute video which included footage of oysters spewing sperm and eggs. I wasn't sure this was appropriate, considering there were plenty of kids in the audience, but I suppose when the animals ejaculating are hermaphrodites, it's cool.

CBF has an amazing envirnomental center that's named after the late Philip Merrill, the eccentric Chesapeake-loving philanthropist who blew his brains out with a 12 gauge during a gusty solo sail this June.

All the water in the center is pumped from massive rainwater holding tanks on the roof and when using the restroom, you have to chuck a handful of sawdust down about 12 feet onto your own feces.

After I painstakingly transformed plastic-coated wire mesh into rectangluar cages, I spent an hour hanging them from the dock that surrounds my sailboat.

And Murphy's Law always wins when I'm cutting rope and untying tight knots; without fail, every damn time I leave my good knife at home I need to cut some serious lines and break crusty knots so I end up getting stuck with whatever dull piece of crap that I dig up from my rusty onboard toolbox. (Hopefully, I'm not alone among boat owners with this one).

So my job for a year is to make sure that the cages stay clear of excess algae in order to allow my oysters maximum water flow. Then, next summer, I give them back to CBF who plants them on a nearby reef with the long term goal of replenishing the oyster stock in the Bay.

And here they are, my babies. I just hope my appetite doesn't overrule my environmental conscience.
Well done, oyster man!
Man, this is cool. On several levels. A) you're positively helping the world about you, and B) You're blogging about something you actually DID in the real world. Nice.
I have the opposite problem, all my good knives are on the boat and whenever I need one at home, I have to sneak into the kitchen when my wife isn't looking.

As to the oysters, that is a very cool thing, the world should thank you.
Thank you! btw, would you happen to have a 12 billion BTU air conditioner?, I've been feeling a little hot lately. Share some of that oyster love man!
Thanks, guys!
This is a great idea. I need to try it myself. Thanks for posting about it.
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