Date of Award

Spring 2008

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Raymond Grizzle


Several oyster reefs were constructed in Great Bay, New Hampshire using remotely-set oysters. A single large reef treatment and a cluster of several small reefs treatment were utilized to test hypotheses relevant to oyster restoration design, and to monitor early restoration reef performance. There was no significant difference in oyster size, density, and recruitment between two experimental reef structures, with both reef types having high survival and fast growth rates for the 2-year study. Both experimental reef structures had significantly higher recruitment rates than natural reefs in 2006, a year of relatively high recruitment (p < 0.05), and elevated yet not significantly higher recruitment rates in 2005, a weak recruitment year (p = 0.078). In situ fluorometry data showed that a restored reef can significantly impact chlorophyll-a levels in overlying water within two years of reef construction. Individual oyster clearance rates ranged from 1.87 L/hr--2.41L/hr.