Louisiana's oyster industry is eagerly awaiting the first season of production at the state's new $3 million oyster hatchery on Grand Isle.

Randy Pausina, the Head of Fisheries for the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, says the facility is about two months away from becoming operational.

"Mid to late summer is probably a good estimate, from our position, to say that producing spat out of the new building will be available."

Spat is the larva of an oyster that has settled by attaching to a surface.

The new oyster hatchery which will be capable of producing one billion oyster larvae a year and was constructed specifically to augment spat production on six oyster cultch plants that were placed on the public seed grounds in 2012 and 2013, if project monitoring showed a need to supplement them with hatchery-raised spat.

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