Oyster Aquaculture Certification
The Wakulla Environmental Institute’s Oyster Aquaculture program was born of a need to sustainably grow oysters to overcome the failing oyster fishing industry. The Wakulla region is uniquely suited to cultivate locally-farmed oysters due to its nutrient-rich waters and warm climate. In addition to the economic benefits of an oyster aquaculture business, farmed oysters help fertilize wild oysters, encourage sport fish and are tremendous cleaners of the environment.
The Oyster Aquaculture certificate program was the direct result of the efforts of local partners such as Leo Lovel of Spring Creek Restaurant, one of the pioneers in oyster farming in the region as well as an early supporter of WEI. Through their experience, WEI was able to develop a program that will revitalize the oyster industry in an environmentally responsible way.
As part of this four-month-long program, all students receive:
100,000 oyster seed
Assistance obtaining a submerged land lease
Costs associated with lease paid for
Materials such as cages, poles and wires
Assistance setting up cages on student’s leased land
Training in all aspects of oyster cultivation
Training in business management such as marketing and distribution
Upon graduation, students will have a fully operating oyster aquaculture business.
Due to its high demand, this program is currently placing interested students on a waiting list. For more information or to be placed on the waiting list, contact Bonnie Holub at firstname.lastname@example.org.