Allison Fitzgerald's Oyster Preservation Efforts Featured in WSJ

Allison Fitzgerald's Oyster Preservation Efforts Featured in WSJ

NJCU Assistant Biology Professor Dr. Allison Fitzgerald is leading the charge to preserve one of the largest oyster reefs in New York City. Located at the convergence of the Bronx and East rivers off the shoes of Soundview Park, the site is home to thousands of the mollusks. Fitzgerald organizes regular visits to the reef with NJCU Biology students and groups of New York-based “eco-volunteers.” They clean the habitat, protect the oysters from diseases and invasive predators, and conduct biological experiments.


NJCU Students at Oyster Reef

Last summer, NJCU biology students Raysa Dominguez, Margaret Ramirez, and Marily Ruiz (pictured left to right) worked with their professor, analyzing samples from the oyster reef. They measured samples for size and listed all invertebrate organisms found. The students were supported on their summer research projects through grants to the Biology Department from the U.S. Education Department Minority Science & Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP) and the Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) STEM grants to the Biology Department.  

It’s important work, notes The Wall Street Journal, which featured Fitzgerald’s environmental efforts in its July 10 issue. Oysters aren’t only valuable because of the pearls they produce; they serve an important ecological function. A single oyster can filter up to 50 gallons of water a day and large reefs along river shorelines serve as a natural barrier against storm flooding.

Read the WSJ article here: