Oystering ban effective June 1

Source of Article: http://www.fortmilltimes.com/124/story/567535.html

(Published May 16, 2009)

BRUNSWICK, Ga. A ban on commercial and recreational oyster harvesting in federal waters of the Atlantic Ocean goes into effect June 1.

The closure is to implement higher state sanitation regulations. A similar closure in federal waters, which start three miles off the coast and extend 200 miles into the Atlantic, was enacted by state officials last summer.

Vibrio parahaemolyticus, or Vp, is a naturally occurring bacterium found in filter-feeding shellfish and is found in higher concentrations during the summer. Eating raw oysters is the most common way to ingest the bacteria.

Dominic Guadagnoli, the DNR's shellfish program manager, says the summer months account for less than 2 percent of Georgia's annual oyster harvest, so the ban should not affect consumers.



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