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South coast waterways re-open for oysters

South coast oyster farmers are gradually returning to normal business after disruptions caused by the extended bushfire season followed by heavy rains.

“It’s one part of the coast’s recovery which is attracting considerable media attention and helping promote the region and events like Narooma Oyster Festival,” said former oyster farmer David Maidment of the Festival committee.

“The upshot is our region’s oysters are going well and should be in great shape for the Festival and for our main selling season over winter.”

Mr Maidment said the fires didn’t damage oysters or burn infrastructure but “it’s been a lousy season”.

“Through December with major routes to Canberra and Sydney closed at various times through fires, getting oysters to market was hit and miss,” he said. “Then January was worse as fires ripped through our region.”

Rain in early February then closed many waterways, washing down ash and fire debris damaging some infrastructure, particularly in the region’s north where rain was heaviest.

Narooma’s Wagonga Inlet has since reopened as have any waterways south that closed, while those north to Shoalhaven are gradually reopening as the waters get the ‘all clear’.

Recent media attention included WIN News, 9 Honey, Sunrise, The Today Show, and ABC Radio across NSW with Simon Marnie.

Festival tickets for entry and all premium events are on sale online and selling fast. Check the Narooma Oyster Festival webpage and Facebook for more information about the Festival.

Above: Explaining oyster farming on Wagonga Inlet to the WIN News team this week are Damon and Trevor Fernihough of Out of the Blue Oysters.

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