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Oyster Farming Fundamentals, Class Five, Mississippi

935617b5786caf04a01f85daf73bb297?s=47 Bill Walton
August 04, 2018

Oyster Farming Fundamentals, Class Five, Mississippi


Bill Walton

August 04, 2018


  1. Oyster Farming Fundamentals OFF/Class of 2018 Mississippi Department of Marine

    Resources, Auburn University, Alabama Cooperative Extension
  2. Class Topics — Class One — Introductions — What is

    off-bottom oyster farming and why do it? — Oyster Biology and Life Cycle — Understanding Triploidy — Introduction to Business Planning — Field Visit to Hatchery in Pass Christian — Class Two – Starting an Oyster Farm — Site Selection — Gear Options — Introduction to Gear Assembly — Permitting — Field Visit to Oyster Farm  
  3. Class Topics — Class Three – Operating an Oyster Farm

    — Grading & Splitting — Controlling Bio-Fouling — Nursery Options — Class Four – Operating an Oyster Farm — Business Plan – Rusty Grice — Inventory Management — Protecting Public Health — Storm Preparation — Mitigating Hazards — Harvest Requirements – Jason Rider  
  4. Class Topics — Class Five – Making the Most of

    an Oyster Farm — Best Management Practices — Marketing and Branding — Basics of Distribution — Risk Management — Business Planning – Conclusion — Seed Counting and Taking Delivery
  5. Housekeeping — Bill Walton Contact Info — billwalton@auburn.edu — 251-654-3392

    — @doctor_oyster, @aushellfishlab — https://mifralabgroup.wixsite.com/home — On the Lid Newsletter — Sign up at my website, or send me an email telling me you want to sign up — Oyster South — www.oystersouth.com
  6. Upcoming Events — Tech Talks in MS - tentative —

    Sept. 12 (Ketcham/Oyster Boss) — Sept. 27 (BST) — Oct. 11 (OysterGro) — Oct. 25 (SEAPA) — Nov. 8 (Hoopers Island) — Nov. 29 (GoDeep/Outlaw) — Vibrio ‘boot camp’ — Sept. 5, AL — Seed counting ‘boot camp’ — Sept. 20, AL — Oyster South Symposium — Feb. 22-23, Orange Beach, AL
  7. Peer to Pier — Contact Rusty Grice — rtg0010@auburn.edu —

    251-229-0826 — Up to $1,000 to defray costs of visiting another commercial farm/hatchery, etc.
  8. Marketing and Branding — Develop a brand — See the

    branding webinar — https://www.ncrac.org/vi deo/branding- opportunities-oyster- farmers — Include your story — Use social media — Invite chefs and buyers to your farm
  9. Components of Your Brand — Species/genetics — Environment — May

    change seasonally! — Culture Methods — Story — Include yourself
  10. Standards — Define your oyster — Maintain consistency — If

    something changes, stop selling the oysters as your brand OR communicate to buyers what is different (e.g., size, salinity) — Hard to raise your price once set — On flip side, need to leave room for others to make money in the process
  11. Distribution — Follow regulations about whom you can sell to

    — Consider distributors that reach markets like Houston, Atlanta, etc. — Consider whether you’ll know where your oysters go — Help your distributor tell the story
  12. Counting Seed — You have a batch of seed …

    now what? — How do you know how many there are? — How do you know how many are in each bag?
  13. Four common methods of estimation — Splitting — Wet pack

    volume — Volumetric displacement — Weighing
  14. Weighing Method — What do you need? — Large scale

    that can get wet — Small postal scale — Ideally metric and precise — Totes/buckets — Marker — Small sample cups — Paper & pad/spreadsheet/calculator
  15. A Couple Warnings — Make sure the seed are drained

    so that you are not weighing water — For very small seed, drain on a sieve and pat them dry — Make sure scales are in same units — Make sure scales are precise enough to give you good measures — Make sure that your sub- samples are representative of the entire sample — E.g., if there are dead seed in the big sample, sub- samples have to have a ‘fair’ chance of having them in there — Decide how you are counting doubles, triples, etc.
  16. How To 1. Get the total weight of the sample

    1. Zero out the container or subtract the weight 2. Take sub-samples from the sample 1. Label the sub-sample 2. Make sure sub-samples are not biased 3. Take at least 3 3. Get a weight for each sub- sample 4. Get a count of live, single oysters from each sub- sample 5. Calculate the number of oysters per unit of weight 6. Multiply the total weight by the number of oysters per unit of weight 7. You now have your estimate!
  17. Can Now Calculate How Many Oysters Per Bag — With

    the calculations, you can now determine how much a scoop needs to weigh to get a desired number of seed per scoop.