LA 624 runs for a few miles east of Yscloskey in southeastern St. Bernard Parish, passing Bakers Ditch and the Hopedale Canal before ending nearly where a rock barrier now closes the old Mississippi River Gulf Outlet.

Camps raised on pilings — some so high that they resemble Daddy-Longlegs — share space with modest mobile homes and boats. The road divides marshes and waterways that open up to oyster country.

There one finds oysterman Wade White. His Hopedale property is hard to miss. On his yard sit about 10,000 tons of crushed limestone, he said, a $300,000 investment spurred by his share of the BP oil spill settlement that he's using to build new reef in his oyster leases, in hopes of turning around years of low production since the spill.

Oyster fishers in parts of Plaquemines Parish are doing the same, feeding most or large portions of their BP checks back into the Gulf as crushed limestone or concrete. They cite declines in their catch and enticingly high oyster prices to take a chance on the investment. Some, like White, have taken to calling themselves "oyster farmers" rather than oyster fishers.

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