We, at ecycler, are always interested in learning about new things that can be recycled, but we had no idea that oyster shells could be reused until we came across an interesting article on TreeHugger.com.

The Oyster Recovery Partnership Shell Recycling Alliance collects oyster shells from restaurants and returns them to the Chesapeake Bay, where new oysters inhabit them.

According to National Geographic, “without some sort of base, be it shells, stones, or reef balls, similar to what are used to help restore coral reefs, the adult oysters sink into the muddy river bottom and die.”

Restoring oyster habitat is good for the environment. According to the Tree Hugger article, oysters serve as natural water filters and as natural coastal buffers that help protect shorelines.

The year-old Oyster Recovery Partnership Shell Recycling Alliance collects used shells from about 50 restaurants in the Maryland-Virgina-DC area. The group has already collected almost two million oyster shells.

We built ecycler.com with flexibility in mind–this gives us the ability to quickly add new materials and add them to specific regions (or the entire US and Canada). For example, we’ve recently added composting to one state–Pennsylvania–as an assessment of its viability.

If you have suggestions, or have a supply of oyster shells, please feel free to contact us.