PHOTOS of Runaway Oyster Cages

Floating gear to cultivate oysters and other shellfish can break free from moorings, as seen from these six separate breakaway cages from 2017-2018 in Gardiner's Bay. The Citizens of Gardiner's Bay seek to have off-bottom shellfish cultivation within Gardiner's and Peconic Bay.

Floating cages have the potential to break free from the field. This results in cages washing up on the beach or getting fouled in other in-water or onshore installations. The opportunity for mid-water collisions is real, and will only increase with more floating gear.

Further, the catch will most likely die, wiping out months or years of effort.

Bottomland shellfish cultivation would avoid these risks to equipment, crop, liability and local conflict.