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  • Shells collected from D.C.- and Maryland-area restaurants are cleaned at Horn Point Oyster Hatchery.
  • At Horn Point, baby oysters (spat) are harvested from native Chesapeake Bay oysters by the millions to be implanted on the recycled shells.
  • Millions of spat circulate through submerged cages and attach to the clean shells.
  • Over a sanctuary in Harris Creek, this barge prepares to unload its spat-on-shell cargo.
  • Hoses wash shells and spat into the creek to build a new reef and create habitat for rockfish, crabs and other life.
  • Stephan Abel, executive director of Oyster Recovery Partnership, shows us a clump of oysters and a map of the sanctuary.
  • The Conservancy’s Mark Bryer (center) examines wild oysters with the crew.
  • We counted over a dozen new oysters growing on this one sample from a reef planted two years earlier.
Passport to Nature
Barging into the Bay — with Oysters

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