Shellfish hatchery would benefit area marinelife

Recently the Waterford/East Lyme Shellfish Commission agreed in a motion to approve current attempts to start a small Shellfish Hatchery in the Niantic Bay estuary to include oysters and/or Niantic Bay scallops. This approval is essentially a project that will maintain and promote the life cycles of local marine bottom mollusks and eventually increase populations that have tended to disappear from the area in the past.

The decreased populations of these popular shellfish foods so plentiful in the past was caused most likely by the increased circulation of tidal water due to the various changes occurring in the Niantic countryside developments; and the loss of the bay plant growth, important as a filter device in assisting marine larval stages destined in the plankton to end up in the ocean or remain in the environment to develop as adult animals.

The Shellfish Commission should be congratulated for its position to improve the promotion of the marine shellfish life cycles in the area. The Army Corp of Engineers currently is evaluating the Hatchery Program. A biological input to the process to impact the increase in Shellfish population in the Niantic Bay area by the Hatchery Program is obvious and must be approved for the future generation’s enjoyment.

Donald E. Leone Sr.

Norwich 

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