VA officials have adopted a $2.7 million plan for restoring oysters in the Chesapeake Bay this year, including funds for hatcheries, oyster farming training and equipment, buying seed from private growers, and combating cow-nosed rays. The Daily Press reports that, for the first time, Virginia's plan puts a major focus on what's called "spat-on-the-shell" oyster replenishment. The method has been produced millions of oysters a year in Maryland. Last year, CBF and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission partnered on this new approach with 4.4 million oysters being transplanted to the Piankatank and Lynnhaven Rivers.
However, The Virginian-Pilot reports that the Virginia Seafood Council also asked the Virginia Marine Resources Commission to extend its experiments with Asian oysters. The commission expects to hold a public hearing on the proposal at its February 27 or March 27 meeting.