Oyster season opens on the Rappahannock


by Larry Chowning

From left, watermen Brian White and Dan Knott off-load their catch at the Urbanna Town Marina dock on Tuesday, November 3. Photo by Larry Chowning

URBANNA—Years ago, when the first day of oyster season opened, local oystermen referred to it as “the day the smokehouse door opened” while others called it “the day the bank opened”—referring to the positive economic impact oysters had on the economy.

Virginia’s 2020-21 public oyster season opened on November 2 with Area 6 on the Rappahannock River open to oystermen. On the first day, wind and choppy seas kept most oystermen at the dock. 

On Tuesday, November 3, however, wind and water calmed and Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) Area 6 was full of oyster boats. The Rappahannock’s Area 6 oyster ground is an area apart of VMRC’s three-year harvest rotation cycle and is open this year from…

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