Gulf oyster harvest has nosedived since BP spill
Fisherman Randy Slavich drags a clunky metal net through an underwater oyster bed in Lake Machias, a brackish body opening into the Gulf of Mexico. For generations, this has been a bountiful lake for harvesting oysters, long before millions of gallons of oil spilled off Louisiana’s coast in 2010.
On this day, Slavich's cage-like net pulls up dozens of empty, lifeless oyster shells.
“It’s not good,” he said, shaking his head as he pushed the shells back into the water. “We’ve never seen it like this, not out here.”