Oyster Reef Workshop, August 7-8 in New Orleans

The Mississippi River Delta Restoration Campaign

Invites You to Attend the



When: August 7 and 8, 2013

Where: University of New Orleans
Research and Technology Park
Lindy Boggs International Conference Center, Room 152
2045 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70122

The workshop is free to attend, however, please register by sending an email to therynhenkel@gmail.com including your name and affiliation.

Conference materials will be archived at saveourlake.org following the workshop.

Presented by:



August 7

8:30 am:   Opening Remarks, Loren Coen, Research Professor, Department of Biological Sciences and Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University

9:00 am – 10:10 am: 

Session 1: Historic and current extent of oyster reefs in Louisiana and geologic setting

9:00 am     R. Condrey (Retired – LSU DOCS) – Louisiana’s vast offshore oyster reef ca. 1519-1807, an internationally prominent navigational hazard defining, building, and protecting the coast: Independent eyewitness accounts of Barroto, Evia, Dumain, and Lafon supported by Charlevoix and Chavez

9:15 am     E. Melancon (Nicholls)A Review of major oyster habitat studies in Louisiana from the Late 19th through the 20th century

9:30 am    P. Banks (LDWF) – Geographic extent of public oyster areas and private oyster leases in Louisiana

9:45 am    S. Gagliano (CEI), M. Gagliano and B. Kappel – Oysters as a geological agent

10:00 am  Questions/Discussion

10:10 am BREAK

10:20 am – 11:30 am

Session 2: Oyster reef ecology and ecological benefits to other fisheries

10:20 am   L. Coen (FAU) An overview of current oyster reef ecology and restoration efforts across the U.S. with a focus on related goals, metrics and methodologies

10:50 am   A. Humphries (Rhodes U), L. Schwarting and M. LaPeyre – If you build it, will they come? Oyster reef restoration and associated fishery use

11:05 am   K. Brown (LSU) – Effect of artificial reef substrate on nekton and commensal abundance

11:20 am    Questions/Discussion

11:30 am   LUNCH

Key Note Speaker: John Tesvich, President of the Louisiana Oyster Task Force: A Louisiana Oyster Industry Perspective on Charting a Path Forward in Uncertain Times

12:30 pm – 1:40 pm

Session 3: Technical nature of reefs

12:30 pm   T. Soniat (UNO) Oyster reef restoration and sustainable fishing: shell budgets as a confluent methodology

12:45 pm   J. Risinger (MWH Americas Inc.)Artificial reefs as coastal breakwaters

1:00 pm     B. Webb (USA) – Laboratory measurements and field observations of wave attenuation by living shoreline reefs

1:15 pm     N. Love (TNC) and B. Piazza – Different approaches to assess the shoreline stabilization function of bioengineered reefs

1:30 pm    Questions/Discussion

1:40 pm    BREAK

1:50 pm – 3:00 pm

Session 4: Project Development

1:50 pm     S. Blitch (TNC)How TNC has selected sites in the past, and what we will do differently in the future

2:05 pm     A. Freeman (EDF) and H. Roberts – A geological approach to the evaluation and creation of oyster habitat

2:20 pm     L. Baggett (USA) – Developing universal metrics and criteria for judging the performance of oyster restoration projects

2:35 pm     L. Coen (FAU) – Developing “restoration-goal based metrics” for judging the performance of oyster restoration projects

2:50 pm     Questions/Discussion

3:00 pm     BREAK

3:10 pm – 4:05 pm

Session 5: Permitting, legality and liability for artificial reefs

3:10 pm     K. Morgan (LDNR) – Permitting for Oyster Reef Projects

3:25 pm     S. Blitch (TNC) and L. Robinson Assessing Risk in Oyster Restoration Projects

3:40 pm     I. Brown (LSU) Artificial Reefs and Liability

3:55 pm     Questions/Discussion

4:05 pm     BREAK

4:15 pm – 5:15 pm

Plenary: Oyster Reefs and the State Master Plan

4:15 – 4:35  Natalie Peyronnin, CPRA –  Oyster reef restoration as a tool in the 2012 and 2017 Coastal Master Plans

4:35 – 4:50  John Lopez, LPBFValue of oyster reefs in the context of the Multiple Lines of Defense Strategy

4:50 –  Discussion Panel – Panelists: Natalie Peyronnin, John Lopez and Sherwood Gagliano


August 8

9:00 am – 11:30am

Session 6: Indepth review of three oyster reef restoration projects

9:00 am     M. LaPeyre (LSU), A. Humphries, S. Casas and J. LaPeyre – Development of ecological services on created shell oyster reefs in coastal Louisiana

9:45 am     BREAK

9:50 am     A. Smith Kyle (TNC), L. Schwarting (LSU), M. Gagliano (CEI)A partnership to protect Louisiana coastal shoreline and create jobs by building oyster reefs

10:35 am   BREAK

10:40 am   E. Melancon (Nicholls) and G. Curole – Mid-Term assessment of CWPPRA Project TE-45: Shoreline stabilization and oyster reef development

11:30 am LUNCH

Key Note Speaker: Loren D. Coen, Ph.D. Research Professor, Department of Biological Sciences and Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic  University

An Overview of Approaches for Mapping and Assessing Intertidal and Subtidal Oyster Habitat: Don’t We Need to Know What We’ve Got Before Its Gone (or We Need to Know What We Have Before We Can Assess What We Lost and Begin to Restore Reefs).

12:30 pm – 1:55 pm

Session 7: Oyster reef restoration: Hatchery, ecological and commercial programs and perspectives

12:30 am   J. Supan (LA Sea Grant/LSU)Hatchery production in oyster restoration

12:45 pm   P. Banks (LDWF)History of Commercial Oyster Reef-Building Activities by LDWF

1:00 pm     T. Ortego (Wayfarer Environmental Technologies)Engineered Oyster Reef Wave Attenuation on the Gulf Shoreline

1:15 pm     M. Lapeyre (LSU), J. Furlong, L. Brown, B. Piazza and K. Brown – Oyster reef restoration in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: extent, methods, outcomes

1:30 pm    Dennis Barkemeyer (HESCO) Constructing submerged living breakwaters with oyster shells

1:45 pm    Questions/Discussion

1:55 pm    BREAK

2:10 pm – 3:10 pm

Session 8: Plenary – Lessons learned from oyster reef restoration projects

Panelists: M. LaPeyre, A. Smith Kyle, E. Meloncon, P. Banks, M. Gagliano

3:10 pm      BREAK

3:20 pm – 4:20 pm

Session 9: Wrap up discussion – Future of artificial reefs