Virginia Rod & Reef Slam

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Angling for Oyster Restoration

Join CBF for a fishing tournament that celebrates oyster reef restoration and the habitat it provides for Chesapeake Bay fish species.

The Virginia Rod & Reef Tournament will not be held in 2023.

When an estuary loses almost all its keystone oyster reefs like the Chesapeake Bay has, the change causes fundamental damage to water quality and habitat for fish, crabs, and other creatures.

What has the Bay lost? We know from surveys performed in the late 1800s that hundreds of acres of naturally occurring oyster reefs were found in the Lower Bay including in the Lynnhaven, Lafayette, and Piankatank rivers. These reefs were home to abundant populations of popular reef fish like speckled trout, black sea bass, and red drum.

Due to the combined effects of decades of over harvesting, habitat destruction, poor water quality, and disease, the population of oysters and reefs in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries are an estimated one percent of historic levels.

However, in recent years, multiple partners, including the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office, VA Marine Resources Commission, Elizabeth River Project, Lynnhaven River Now, and CBF have been restoring oyster reefs in the Lafayette and Lynnhaven Rivers (among others). The return of these habitats means a return of healthy populations of popular reef fish.

The Virginia Rod & Reef Tournament helps us find out which fish can be caught on restored and enhanced reefs in the lower Bay region!

Support the Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Your donation helps the Chesapeake Bay Foundation maintain our momentum toward a restored Bay, rivers, and streams for today and generations to come.

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Save the Bay

Founded in 1967, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) is the largest independent conservation organization dedicated solely to saving the Bay.

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