Essex Native Oyster Restoration Initiative. Putting the Oysters back into Essex – Matt Uttley
The Essex Native Oyster Restoration Initiative is an exciting collaboration, established in 2011, between oystermen, nature conservation organisations and UK Government, it is the largest marine restoration project by area in the UK.
Native oyster numbers have decreased by over 95% and native oyster beds are one of the most threatened marine habitats in Europe. The Essex Marine Conservation Zone is unique as the only MCZ designated as a protected area for oyster beds and for the habitat they provide.
ENORI aims to repopulate the Essex MCZ and restore the natural habitat to allow the oysters to recruit successfully and for their numbers to grow back to historic levels.
The Solent Oyster Restoration Project – Jacob Kean Hammerson
Run by Blue Marine Foundation (BLUE), the Solent Oyster Restoration Poject is aiming to restore native oysters on a large scale. Located on the south coast of England, the Solent – once Europe’s largest self-sustaining native oyster fishery – is the strait of water that separates the Isle of Wight and the mainland. This collaborative project between scientists, fishermen, conservationists and local industry is aiming to restore five million oysters to the Solent waters over the next five years and reinvigorate the ecosystem services the oyster once provided.
About the Speakers
Matt Uttley is a Marine biologist working primarily with Shellfish. Matt attended the University of Southampton where he completed an integrated Masters in Marine Biology. He is an avid supporter of sustainability and environmental responsibility when it comes to food, particularly with seafood.
Matt spent the last year and a half as the scientific officer for a large offshore Mussel farm in Devon. Mussel farming is a great example of an environmentally friendly and sustainable source of seafood.
In November 2018 Matt moved to work with the Blue Marine Foundation and the Zoological Society of London to coordinate the ENORI project.
Jacob Kean Hammerson is a biologist currently working for the Blue Marine Foundation (BLUE) on marine habitat restoration. Jacob studied BSc Biology at the University of Sussex, graduating in 2016. Since August 2017 he has been coordination BLUE’s Solent Oyster Restoration Project. From a young age Jacob has been fascinated by wildlife and while at university this grew into a passion to preserve and restore wildlife, particularly in the UK.
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Marine Life Talks
These talks are usually held on the first Thursday of each month (except in January) at 7pm in the Henry Charnock Lecture Theatre, National Oceanography Centre. Please sign-in outside the lecture theatre on level four.