Oysters may help remove the contamination from the water in New Jersey.
The state has decided to take action against the obstinate water pollution problem by placing oyster colonies in some of the most polluted areas.
Researchers will monitor the probability of the improvement in the quality of water through the natural filtering practices in the areas such as Raritan Bay.
The state tried to do something similar about 5 years ago but ran into challenges when the oysters were being poached and sold. Because the water in some areas is so polluted these oysters are not fit for human consumption. The program had to be shut to down to avoid any damage to the $800 million dollar industry.
This time around safe guards will be put in place to avoid any harvesting of these particular oysters. According to a spokesperson of DEP, Bob Considine, the first priority is safety.
How do these oysters work to make the waterways clean?
These oysters act as the small water filtration systems. They are continuously filtering the water in order to eat. They filter out the microscopic algae as their food. During the filtration of the water, not only do the get their food source but they also absorb pathogens and chemicals in the water filtration process. Pathogens may be pharmaceuticals herbicides and flame retardants.
These tiny creatures are recognized as one of the greatest natural filters. However, being as tiny as they are will require a heck of lot, some say even more than the water ways they are meant to clean can hold.