Shellfish Reef Restoration
Shellfish reefs, made up of oysters and mussels are prolific ‘fish factories’. Working just like coral reefs, they support the growth of important fish species whilst also helping to improve water quality and increase biodiversity. Yet since European settlement, we’ve lost almost all of our shellfish reefs- making these one of Australia’s most threatened marine habitats. We are restoring shellfish reefs to protect the health of our oceans and contribute to the recreational and economic vitality of our coastal communities.
Native shellfish reefs are currently considered “functionally extinct” ecosystems in Australia. Shellfish are ecosystem engineers that create conditions that allow many other plant and animal species in estuaries and coastal bays to thrive. Thus, these habitats are vital to the health of Australia’s bays and estuaries supporting fish production, improving water quality and reducing coastal erosion.