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March 1, 2010: Shellfish Aquaculture has now been recognized by the U. S. Department of Agriculture for the positive impact it has in the Chesapeake Bay for removing nutrients and sediments from the water. They have added shellfish aquaculture to the Natural Resources Conservation Service(NRCS), 2010 Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative Program. Through this program, shellfish aquaculturists can sign up for a program to be paid for gear cycling and best management practices on their farm. Information on how an individual can apply is included in the Fisheries Management Division, Conservation and Replenishment Program section. [2010 Aquaculture Information]

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