Oysters are found in every Mid Atlantic coastal state. In many states, wild caught and farm-raised oysters are harvested for food.
In some states, recreational oyster harvesting is done by hand, tonging, diving, or other techniques.
Major oyster producing estuaries include Long Island Sound, Delaware Bay, Chesapeake Bay, Virginia coastal bays, Albemarle Sound, and Pamlico Sound.
In addition to their value as food, oysters provide an array of benefits to coastal habitats. Their ability to filter water is well known. Oysters also provide important habitats for fish, crustaceans, and other marine life.