NORFOLK – The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is dropping 275 oyster reef balls in the Lafayette River this week to create new oyster breeding grounds.
“Oysters will start spawning in the Lafayette in May and when they spawn they eventually create larvae. The larvae will swim around for a couple of weeks and then they'll start looking for a place to settle,” explains Tommy Leggett from the CBF.
“So when they're ready to settle these reef balls will be there primed and ready for them to settle, so we're creating additional oyster habitat,” says Leggett.
CBF says the Lafayette oysters are one of several similar clean water restoration projects supported by federal funding.
According to the White House clean water projects face steep cuts because of the Sequester.
“We know it can work need to just really finish the job,” says Christy Everett, CBF Hampton Roads Director.
Everett says the impact of the sequester on Chesapeake Bay projects is still unknown but hangs as a black cloud above the water.
This year Virginia passed $216 million in funding to help localities improve sewer and storm water disposal systems.
Everett says state, local and even military bay partners are in and keeping Congress on board for Bay restoration is critical.
“Federal funds made this local restoration possible,” says Everett.