by Venita Jenkins
An army of volunteers and UNCW Center for Marine Science researchers are working together to stop erosion and reclaim lost shoreline in Brunswick County. Twice a year, residents and UNCW volunteers stack bushels of oyster shells along the Intracoastal Waterway behind St. James Plantation near Southport. Taylor Ryan, a St. James resident, got the idea for the project in 2004 after attending a seminar by the North Carolina Coastal Federation on restoring and rebuilding the life of oysters in NC.
Each oyster cleans about 30 to 50 gallons of water per day.
Citizens take an active role in reef development.
130 volunteers offer helping hands for the project.
Volunteers stack 200-400 bushels of oyster shells each year.