Gauging state-level and user group views of oyster reef restoration activities in the northern Gulf of Mexico

Ocean and Coastal Management
Louisiana Chapter of The Nature Conservancy from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
By: , and 



Successful oyster reef restoration, like many conservation challenges, requires not only biological understanding of the resource, but also stakeholder cooperation and political support. To measure perceptions of oyster reef restoration activities and priorities for future restoration along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast, a survey of 1500 individuals representing 4 user groups (oyster harvesters, shrimpers, environmental organization members, professionals), across 5 states (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida) was conducted in 2011. All respondents highly supported reef restoration efforts, but there was a dichotomy in preferred restoration goals with commercial fishermen more likely to support oyster reef restoration for stock enhancement, while professionals and environmental organization members were more likely to support oyster reef restoration to enhance ecosystem services. All user groups identified enforcement, funding, and appropriate site selection as basic requirements for successful reef restoration. For management of restored oyster reefs, oyster harvesters and shrimpers were less likely to support options that restricted the use of reefs, including gear restrictions and permanent closures, but did support rotating annual reef closures, while other stakeholders were willing to consider all options, including annual reef closures and sanctuary reefs. Overall, there were clear differences in management and communication preferences across user groups, but few differences across states. Understanding these key differences in stakeholder support for, and willingness to accept specific management actions is critical in moving management and restoration forward while minimizing conflict.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Gauging state-level and user group views of oyster reef restoration activities in the northern Gulf of Mexico
Series title Ocean and Coastal Management
DOI 10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2012.06.001
Volume 67
Year Published 2012
Language English
Publisher Elsevier Applied Science
Publisher location Barking, Essex, England
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Atlanta
Description 8 p.
First page 1
Last page 8
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details