Who We Are & What We Do.
Mook Sea Farm is an oyster farm founded in 1985 on the Damariscotta River in Midcoast Maine. We rear the American oyster (Crassotsrea virginica) from egg to adult size. Our hatchery produces 80 to 100 million juvenile oysters (seed) annually for sale to other oyster growers throughout the Mid-Atlantic and the Northeast, and for our own cultivation of Wiley Point and Pemaquid Point oysters for the half-shell market.
How We Grow Our Oysters.
Our hatchery is the engine that drives the business. For nearly 30 years we have doggedly pursued our goals of understanding the American oyster’s life cycle, and using the best available technology to reliably provide disease free, disease resistant, and naturally grown juvenile oyster seed. In 2013 all of our seed orders were filled and shipped on time.
Mook Sea Farm holds leases from the State of Maine on the Damariscotta River for farming oysters. Our oysters are grown in OysterGro™ cages. They are equipped with air filled floats that hold six bags of oysters just below the water’s surface. Like a farm on land, each season brings its own set of activities. During the growing season the cages are regularly flipped up, supported by the floats, so that the cage, bags, and oysters can be air dried to control fouling. We also grade and thin the seed to give it room for growth and to maintain good shell shape. Late in the fall, in order to prevent damage from ice, the cages must be sunk to the river bottom. In early spring, the cages are hauled back to the surface and the cycle begins again.
Research and Development.
In order to both survive and thrive as an oyster farm it is important to always be looking for ways toimprove. We are continuously engaged in research and development and some of these efforts have led to notable innovations. These include: the development of methods for overwintering seed out of the water; a tidal powered nursery system; a vessel and gear for mechanizing the use of OysterGro™ cages; and a unique, energy efficient, and highly productive system for growing the microalgae we use for food in the hatchery.
Our world truly is your oyster!