In 2012 Super storm Sandy devastated the hatchery to the point where repair seemed impossible. That is, until January 2014 when the Town Of Islip decided to expand on their bay bottom leasing program and offered a lease to the hatchery and the surrounding property.
The former Town of Islip Hatchery, now Great Atlantic Shellfish Farms LLC, was first opened in 1986 by the Town of Islip to expand on their resource enhancement program.
For 26 years, the Town Of Islip used this hatchery to produce soft-shell clams (Mya arenaria), bay scallops (Argopecten irradians) , hard clams (Mercenaria mercenaria) and oysters (Crassostrea virginica).
Through an extensive bidding process the hatchery lease was awarded to Doug and Kerry Winter thus beginning Great Atlantic Shellfish Farms LLC. Under the supervision of Marty Byrnes, Doug and Kerry Winter recruited 20 volunteers to assist in the initial repairs to the hatchery. Once completed, more extensive repairs were made and by March 2014 the hatchery started producing shellfish once again!
By the summer of 2014 the Winter brothers, alongside their full time staff under the guidance of Marty Byrnes have brought the hatchery back into full operation producing and selling hard shell clams, soft shell clams, and oysters.
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