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By Joel McCord and Joel McCord,SUN STAFF | October 1, 1999
Maryland's watermen, whose oyster season begins today, are caught between the good news of a fast-growing oyster population and the bad news of the summer drought, weather perfect for diseases that kill oysters.The oysters produced in the near-record spat set of 1997 are reaching marketable size, and they are producing even more oysters, said Chris Judy, head of shellfish programs at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The saltier water in the Chesapeake Bay resulting from the lack of rain encouraged oyster reproduction.
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FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | May 7, 2014
Maryland's depleted oyster population has more than doubled since 2010, state officials reported Wednesday, giving state scientists hope the bivalves are on track to regain a "substantial foothold" in the Chesapeake Bay after being devastated by diseases over the past 30 years. An annual fall survey by the Department of Natural Resources found that the number and size of oysters dredged up from more than 250 longtime oyster bars had increased for the third straight year. The oyster "biomass index," as it's known, has reached the highest level measured since around the time the bay's bivalves began to be ravaged by two parasitic diseases.
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NEWS
By Frank D. Roylance and Frank D. Roylance,SUN STAFF | April 18, 1996
The biggest satellite ever built by the Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel is poised for launch tomorrow from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.Dubbed the Midcourse Space Experiment (MSX), the $325 million satellite is designed to test detection systems for a future ballistic missile defense system capable of spotting enemy missiles in "mid-course," as they coast in space, with engines off, en route to their targets.The data it collects during its five-year mission will also be released to civilian scientists for a variety of environmental studies, including investigations of ozone depletion, air pollution, space contamination and global atmospheric changes.
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | August 31, 2011
A new scientific study recommends halting all commercial harvest of oysters in Maryland, warning that the ecologically important bivalves are even more depleted than previously believed and that continuing to catch them risks eliminating them altogether from much of the upper Chesapeake Bay. The study, led by researchers with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, concludes that the oyster population in Maryland's portion of...
NEWS
By Tom Horton and Tom Horton,SUN STAFF | January 4, 2002
NEW YEAR, new oyster. Learn to say Crassostrea ariakensis. You will hear much about this Asian bivalve in the next year or two as a savior of the Chesapeake Bay -- also as a major threat. With overharvest and disease having reduced the native Eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica, to a remnant population, the ariakensis oyster indeed looks attractive. It resembles the native bay oyster, tastes as good, grows twice as fast and is highly resistant to MSX and Dermo, the two diseases plaguing C. virginica.
NEWS
By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | February 2, 2003
DETROIT - The smell knocked the men back before anything else, a blast of old rubber and rotting horsehair and Alabama-baked red clay. For days, the mold and mildew from Montgomery City Lines' bus No. 2857 filled their sinuses as the men dug cobwebs and wasp's nests from under the driver's seat and behind the dashboard. Sometimes, history is left to decay. Sometimes, it's recovered in the most unlikely place. The bus believed to be the one Rosa Parks made famous Dec. 1, 1955, has sat in the back of MSX International, an automotive engineering company in Auburn Hills, Mich.
NEWS
By TOM HORTON | May 27, 1995
BIVALVE, N.J. -- On a late-August morning in 1956, Clyde A. Phillips had perhaps history's first encounter with the tinymonster that would change a way of life on both Delaware and Chesapeake bays.Phillips, a prosperous oyster planter, had gone that fateful morning for a routine, pre-season inspection of his shellfish beds that lay off what might be called the "other" Jersey Shore.These vast marshes, brackish tidal rivers and isolated necks bordering Delaware Bay today seem like the dark side of the moon compared with the bustle and throng of Cape May, Wildwood, Atlantic City and the state's other Atlantic beaches.
NEWS
By Tom Horton and Tom Horton,SUN STAFF | November 1, 1996
THIS WEEK: Origins of a bay killer; billboards an environmentalist can love; an update on reviving sturgeon; and the straight poop on farm animals and the bay.The source of MSX is still a mysteryFor nearly 40 years it has been a mystery: From where did MSX, the disease that began devastating Chesapeake oysters around 1959, come?It has waxed and waned since then, retreating in rainy years when the bay is fresher, advancing during droughts when the estuary salts up.Along with Dermo, another disease, MSX continues to frustrate attempts to restore the shellfish that acted as a vital ecological filter cleansing bay waters, and whose harvest once employed a fifth of everyone fishing in America.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Evening Sun Staff | October 31, 1991
Parasitic oyster diseases, apparently aided by last winter's warm temperatures and the summer's drought, are again devastating shellfish beds in Maryland's portion of Chesapeake Bay, say watermen and state officials.Preliminary surveys indicate that oyster bars in the lower bay, in the Patuxent River and in some tributaries of the Potomac River have lost the vast majority of their oysters, W. Peter Jensen, fisheries director for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, said yesterday.
NEWS
By Joel McCord and Joel McCord,SUN STAFF | February 5, 2001
Dermo, one of two diseases that ravaged the Chesapeake Bay oyster population in the early 1990s, showed up in oyster bars throughout the bay during surveys last fall, according to state officials. But the oysters on those bars were surviving at greater rates than they did in 1992 and 1993, the years of the record-low harvests, suggesting they might be more resistant to the disease. "We can't say scientifically that that's the case," said John Surrick, spokesman for the state Department of Natural Resources.
NEWS
By Carrie Madren | May 16, 2011
For nearly a century, oysters have been pummeled from two sides: us and nature. Our appetite for oysters has spurred overharvesting; at the same time, pollution has made oysters more vulnerable to disease, and sediment has smothered oyster beds. Conservationists, lawmakers and natural resource experts have been scratching their heads for nearly as long, trying to figure out how to save Crassostrea virginica populations. Now, solutions that give us hope are coming from us — and nature.
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | February 7, 2011
The Chesapeake Bay's beleaguered oyster population spawned a bumper crop of babies last year, state officials announced Monday, and there are signs that the diseases that have ravaged the bay's bivalves for more than two decades might have loosened their stranglehold. Gov. Martin O'Malley heralded the "exciting new evidence" from the state's recently completed survey of Maryland waters, adding in a statement that there is "reason to be more optimistic than ever about the recovery of this iconic species.
NEWS
By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | February 2, 2003
DETROIT - The smell knocked the men back before anything else, a blast of old rubber and rotting horsehair and Alabama-baked red clay. For days, the mold and mildew from Montgomery City Lines' bus No. 2857 filled their sinuses as the men dug cobwebs and wasp's nests from under the driver's seat and behind the dashboard. Sometimes, history is left to decay. Sometimes, it's recovered in the most unlikely place. The bus believed to be the one Rosa Parks made famous Dec. 1, 1955, has sat in the back of MSX International, an automotive engineering company in Auburn Hills, Mich.
NEWS
By Dennis O'Brien and Dennis O'Brien,SUN STAFF | November 19, 2002
Chesapeake Bay oysters -- ravaged by drought and disease -- are becoming so scarce that state biologists expect this year's harvest to be the smallest since Maryland began keeping records in 1870. Biologists completing a survey of the oyster population this week blame the decline on a three-year drought that has created a saltier bay and a favorable habitat for the diseases that have been killing oysters for decades. "We're seeing diseases literally robbing the bay of the oysters," said Christopher Judy, director of the state Department of Natural Resources' shellfish division.
NEWS
By Tom Horton and Tom Horton,SUN STAFF | January 4, 2002
NEW YEAR, new oyster. Learn to say Crassostrea ariakensis. You will hear much about this Asian bivalve in the next year or two as a savior of the Chesapeake Bay -- also as a major threat. With overharvest and disease having reduced the native Eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica, to a remnant population, the ariakensis oyster indeed looks attractive. It resembles the native bay oyster, tastes as good, grows twice as fast and is highly resistant to MSX and Dermo, the two diseases plaguing C. virginica.
NEWS
By Joel McCord and Joel McCord,SUN STAFF | February 5, 2001
Dermo, one of two diseases that ravaged the Chesapeake Bay oyster population in the early 1990s, showed up in oyster bars throughout the bay during surveys last fall, according to state officials. But the oysters on those bars were surviving at greater rates than they did in 1992 and 1993, the years of the record-low harvests, suggesting they might be more resistant to the disease. "We can't say scientifically that that's the case," said John Surrick, spokesman for the state Department of Natural Resources.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,SUN STAFF | September 21, 1995
In another blow for Maryland's beleaguered watermen, scientists say that the Chesapeake Bay's oysters are sick and dying again, less than a year after they seemed to be recovering from a seven-year bout with parasitic diseases.Spurred by the summer's drought, which made the bay's water much saltier than usual, the oyster diseases MSX and Dermo have returned with a vengeance.Oysters throughout the bay are infected with one or the other disease. Hardest hit is the lower bay, where MSX already has killed off more than half of the population, scientists say."
NEWS
By Joel McCord and Joel McCord,SUN STAFF | January 6, 2000
Nearly all of 2,000 oysters sampled by state scientists in October were infected with Dermo, one of two diseases that ravaged the Chesapeake Bay oyster population in the early 1990s. But oysters are surviving at greater rates than in 1992 and 1993, the years of record low harvests, suggesting they are becoming more tolerant of the disease, said Steve Jordan, head of the state Department of Natural Resources' laboratory in Oxford. "If this holds up, we'll be encouraged," he said. DNR crews dredged samples from oyster bars from Poole's Island to the mouth of the Potomac River over about four weeks to get a picture of the oyster population.
NEWS
By Joel McCord and Joel McCord,SUN STAFF | October 22, 1999
ABOARD THE MISS KAY -- In a steady rain, crew members sort through the pile of oysters on a washboard, separating "markets" and "smalls," "spat" and "boxes" and recording their findings as part of the state Department of Natural Resources fall survey.They started three weeks ago near Poole's Island, about 18 miles north of the Bay Bridge, and have been working their way south dredging on the Eastern and Western shores to get a picture of the oyster population.So far, they have found fewer boxes -- the empty shells of oysters killed by Dermo or MSX -- than they had feared.
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