EAST DENNIS — Trays stolen from offshore oyster grants over the last month have begun washing up on beaches in Brewster and Eastham, the only evidence left by oyster thieves who have repeatedly struck the tidal flats off Crowes Pasture this summer.
More than $40,000 in oysters and equipment has been stolen to date, prompting one Crowes Pasture farmer to offer a $1,000 reward for information leading authorities to the poachers.
While his two grants are not among those hit this summer, John Lowell is eager to put an end to the worst spate of thefts Crowes Pasture has ever experienced.
"I'm sure some of the other oyster farmers will pitch in, but even if they don't, I'm offering the reward," Lowell said. "I'm hoping it will pique someone's interest."
The thieves know a great deal about oyster farms and appear to be confident, Lowell said. They even stopped to eat about a dozen oysters while robbing the flats in mid-June. "These individuals are extremely brazen," he said.