Water Quality and Crack Staff Deliver Banner Crop of Shellfish
Mark Alan Lovewell

The Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group had one of its most productive summers, mass producing millions of baby quahaugs, bay scallops and oysters. And to top it all off, the shellfish hatchery produced twice the usual numbers of bay scallop seed.

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Cape Pogue Algae Bloom Returns, Bay Scallops Moved to Sengie
Mark Alan Lovewell

Volunteer Edgartown shellfishermen worked the tides last week to transfer young bay scallops out of harm’s way at Cape Pogue Pond, after an algae bloom seen a year ago returned.

Cochlodinium polykrikoides, a single-cell dinoflagellate, staged a late-summer comeback in the large, pristine bay that lies north of the Dike Bridge on Chappaquiddick. The algae is not harmful to humans but can be toxic to shellfish.

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Warmer Waters No Friend to Shellfish
Liz Durkee

Clam chowder, bay scallops, fried oysters. Wampum bracelets. Shellfish are the grand bounty of the soft, sparkling salt ponds that ring the Island shore. We’d be hard pressed to find a local cultural symbol more significant than the water-worn purple and white quahaug shell. Purple — the Island color.

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Gazette Chronicle: Surf and Turf
Cynthia Meisner

Surf and Turf

From Gazette editions of January, 1936:

Menemsha Pond appears to be producing an unusual variety of scallops this winter. Although the set is not particularly heavy, the scallops, especially those in Gay Head waters, are said to be the largest ever marketed in this locality.

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Lake Tashmoo Reopens for Shellfishing

Lake Tashmoo, which had been closed to shellfishing because of a rare toxic algae bloom, reopened Friday morning.

A press release from the town of Tisbury said that the state notified shellfish constable Danielle Ewart on Friday morning to say that additional testing indicated the pond had been cleared and that it could be reopened to shellfishers immediately.

Ms. Ewart discovered the bright pink algae bloom called prorocentrum lima in the outside flats of Lake Tashmoo a few weeks ago. The algae has been associated with diarrheal shellfish poisoning.

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Lake Tashmoo Closed to Shellfishing

Lake Tashmoo has been closed to shellfishing as of Wednesday afternoon due to the presence of a potentially toxic algae bloom.

Tisbury town administrator John Bugbee said Thursday that people should not shellfish in the body of water, and should dispose of all shellfish recently caught there, as there is no way of knowing how long the algae bloom has been in place.

Signs are posted along the shore.

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Bay Scallop Season; Edgartown Is Tops, Oak Bluffs Meatiest
Mark Alan Lovewell

If you are looking for a successful measure of the bay scallop season, which ended this week, the results can be found in large piles of shells in three down-Island towns.

There was a huge pile of shells next to a fish shack at the foot of Skiff avenue in Tisbury last week, as well as similar piles at the old Edgartown dump and in Oak Bluffs at Madeiras Cove. It was a good year, though there are many who have memories of better ones.

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Shell Recovery: Giving Back To the Underwater Community
Peter Brannen

Vineyarders are rightfully proud of the yearly abundance of oysters and scallops pulled from Island ponds, but little is made of what goes back into the water. Jessica Kanozak, creator of the Island’s nascent shell recovery program, hopes to change all that. After the first year of a pilot program on the Vineyard to return seashells to the sea, experts and community leaders met Saturday to discuss the program’s strengths, weaknesses and potential for expansion.

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