Marine conservation:
Ecological Restoration
of the native oyster species Ostrea edulis

Photo: AWI/Mueller-Elsner

Restoration Projects Germany – PROCEED

Project beneficiary:Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Bremerhaven – Helgoland – Sylt
Project funding:Supported by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) with funds from the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) within the Federal Programme for Biological Diversity (Bundesprogramm Biologische Vielfalt).
Project term: 2018 – 2024
Broodstock of Ostrea edulis in the PROCEED hatchery on Helgoland. (Photo: Alfred-Wegener-Institut / Charitos Zapitis)
Large-scale microalgae production for feeding and conditioning broodstock oysters and for feeding oyster larvae and spat. (Photo: Alfred-Wegener-Institut / Charitos Zapitis)
Seed oyster of Ostrea edulis (2mm size). (Photo: Alfred-Wegener-Institut / Verena Merk)

Following the Berlin Oyster Recommendation and as a result of RESTORE, PROCEED is engaged in implementing an oyster hatchery on the German offshore island Helgoland to establish a healthy broodstock and a sufficient seed oyster production for ecological restoration. Existing and upcoming biological and technical research questions within the process of seed oyster production are addressed and results are directly applied in the hatchery. PROCEEDs overall goal is to supply restoration and nature conservation measures in the German Bight with healthy oysters and therefore facilitate the return of the native oyster and its valuable ecosystem services.

One further goal of PROCEED is the support of the NORA network: the NORA coordination is funded within this project for two years. The aim is to facilitate the important communication and interaction between the European oyster restoration projects and therefore strengthen native oyster populations within their whole European area of distribution.

PROCEED at the same seeks and provides an intensive knowledge transfer into society: An interactive online knowledge platform, multiple exhibitions at different locations in Germany, as well as specifically developed educational material will raise awareness for this ecological key-species and the relevance of its restoration. Ostrea edulis habitats are characterized as hotspots of biodiversity and oyster reefs are used as an example to explain biodiversity as a stabilizing factor for the wider ecosystem and to underline the general significance of ecosystem functions and services.

For further Information:
https://www.awi.de/en/science/biosciences/shelf-sea-system-ecology/main-research-focus/european-oyster/proceed.html
https://biologischevielfalt.bfn.de/bundesprogramm/projekte/projektbeschreibungen/nachzucht-der-europaeischen-auster-fuer-eine-wiederansiedlung-in-der-deutschen-nordsee-proceed.html (only in german)

Supported by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation with funds from the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety within the Federal Programme for Biological Diversity (Bundesprogramm Biologische Vielfalt). 

Contact:
Dr. Bernadette Pogoda
bernadette.pogoda@awi.de