Thousands of native oysters have been introduced to Windara Reef – the first of two oyster deployments planned for 2019.
Situated south of Ardrossan on the Yorke Peninsula, and within the vicinity of Rogues Point, Windara Reef is part of Australia’s biggest reef restoration project.
During 2019, more than seven million juvenile native Australian Flat Oysters grown in South Australian hatcheries will be seeded on the new reef.
The first deployment of 50,000 oysters, was donated by Primary Industries and Regions SA’s research division SARDI (the South Australian Research and Development Institute), and released onto the reef in early April. The native Angasioysters were about eight months old and roughly the size of a 50 cent piece.
The Windara Reef project, will restore an important marine reef ecosystem that has been lost from Gulf St Vincent for some time; increasing marine biodiversity, boosting fish productivity and improving water quality.
Construction of the reef began in 2017 with 150 limestone reefs laid across a twenty-hectare bare, sandy area in western Gulf St Vincent.
Diving surveys have previously shown promising signs of changes to fish diversity since the reef was established and the deployment of baby oysters that will start producing spat when they are three years old will help create a self-sustaining reef in the long term.
This project is a partnership funded by The Nature Conservancy, the Australian Government, the South Australian Government, the Yorke Peninsula Council, The University of Adelaide and the Ian Potter Foundation.