Emma CochranMississippi Oyster Gardening Program Coordinator
118 North Royal Street
Mobile, AL 36602
Emma Cochran is a full-time staff member of the Mississippi Alabama Sea Grant Consortium where she is responsible for the Mississippi Oyster Gardening Program. In that capacity, Emma recruits new gardeners, supports gardeners, and provides outreach and education. Her goal is to expand the Mississippi Oyster Gardening Program and increase the visibility of the program.
She holds a bachelor's degree in environmental studies and English from Hobart and William Smith Colleges and a master's degree in oceanography from Texas A&M University. Her experience ranges from teaching undergraduate oceanography labs for two years to examining the role of particles in the formation of hypoxia on the Texas-Louisiana Shelf.
In the Mississippi Oyster Gardening Program, volunteers who have access to waterfront property along the Mississippi Gulf Coast grow oysters for restoration in gardens that hang from their piers.
Gardeners clean the gardens weekly from June to November by pulling them out of the water and rinsing off mud, algae and any other fouling material. After visually inspecting the gardens and removing predators, such as blue crabs, stone crabs and oyster drills, the gardeners return the gardens to the water. The oysters are then collected and planted on reefs.