Sunday, March 25, 2012

save the world: Oyster shells.

When I first came to New Zealand as a university student, sometimes I went out with other foreign students to the beach. We were seafood crazy, and when we saw the beach with oysters, we went wild, and used rocks to hammer at the top shell of the oysters and ate the oysters.

Friends who were here longer than us told us to stop. They said when we hammered at the top shell and left thebottom shell, the smooth side of the bottom shell prevents the babies to abhere to the rocks. Eventually they die.

I told the same reasoning to new visitors, but did they listen? Evenually, the rocks become graveyards.

The beach at Point Chevalier where I live have oysters, but they are very small. The shells are sharp and cut beach users' feet. I have to wear special beach shoes as in this photo.

Last Saturday, the council invited residents to come to get rid of the oyster shells to make the beach a better and safer place. I wanted to go, but have a prior appointment.

Here's the notice.

2012 Point Chevalier Beach Oyster Clean-up

the purpose of the clean-up is to help make the beach safer and more enjoyable for beach-goers, especially swimmers and beachwalkers

co-ordinated by the Point Chevalier Community Committee, in association with Auckland Kitesurf and Albert Eden Local Board, and funded and supported by Auckland Council

date and time: 3pm, Saturday 24 March 2012

the focus of this year's clean-up involves chipping live oyster shells off the rocks and picking up loose shells washed up on the beach. The clean-up is at a different location this year, taking place at the Coyle Park end of Pt Chevalier beach

following the clean-up, the oysters and shell collected will be recycled into compost

those people who are keen to participate this year are asked to register by contacting Murray Cameron from the Point Chevalier Community Committee .

volunteers will need to meet at the bottom of Coyle Park Beach steps

it is advised that people wear closed footwear and if possible, bring their own gardening gloves, bucket, spade and wheelbarrow. Some equipment will be provided

the clean-up will be followed by a BBQ for volunteers, provided by Auckland Council
Address volunteers will need to meet at the bottom of Coyle Park Beach steps

I went to the beach yesterday, the beach had pristine white sand.


diane b said...

That is good that the oyster shells were cleared off the beach. We used to pull oysters off the rocks with a knife and eat them when we first came to Australia back in the 50's.

Randi said...

Wow...I have never seen so many oyster shells on a beach before.

eileeninmd said...

Clearing the beach of the empty shells was a good thing to do. And it is great they will be using the shells for compost. I do not care for oysters. Great post, Ann! Have a wonderful week!

NatureFootstep said...

nice place for photography. :)

A Colorful World said...

Sad about the oyster shells. It was something I didn't know! Love the photographs!

Eden said...

That is really sad.
Beautiful photos.

genie said...

Ann...I have mixed emotions about the removal of the oyster shells. I know the beach goers and the tourists want to walk on a pristine beach with oyster shells cutting their feet, but I do not like the idea of creating a situation in nature which while hamper the production of the babies. How to we hit a middle line where nature is protected and people are happy. I just do not think this is every going to happen in my lifetime. Beautiful photography. Glad you are wearing flip flops. genie

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...

I don't know if getting rid of these oyster shells are a good or bad thing. New Zealand is a very small countrywith a long coast line. Most of the people I spoke to said it is a good idea. They were getting rid of the oyster shells in a small area. Also manyof the beds were "graveyards" as I had written, rocks that have become hostile to baby oysters because previous "harvestors" had removed the top shelf, living the rocks unhabitable to babies.

The areas where they removed the shells are only a small area. Also, those oysters there are very small, not the ones you buy in the shops.

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...

It wasn't flip flops I was wearing. These are special shoes which are quite light, and prevents shells from cutting my feet.

The oyster shells are quite sharp and inflict deep wounds..

betchai said...

i probably would be too excited to see fresh oysters, i only see them in the northern coast here, what we have here are mostly mussels and other shells.

A Colorful World said...

Thank you so much for your cute comment on my blog post!

Gattina said...

I only know oysters in a package or a basket ready to be eaten. I loved oisters, but then once at New Year, I got so sick, that now I don't like them anymore. But I love seafood in general and especially the Belgian mussels !

Ebie said...

Hi Ann, unfortunately I do not eat oysters, it has a slimy feel to it. When we go tide pooling, we see a lot of mussels and we are not to take them out of their habitat.

On the turbines, I am not familiar if they are noisy or not. They are along the freeway so I do not hear any sound. But at night, they are lighted with red bulbs, as a precaution, it is located near a municipal airport.