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Ecological Health








  Bureau of Marine Water Monitoring



AOSouth is an ocean shellfish growing area that encompasses 43 miles of coastline from Cape May Point in the south to Absecon Inlet in the north. This growing area then extends eastward from the coast out into the Atlantic Ocean for three miles.

The numerous coastal towns adjoining the shellfish growing waters of AOSouth are urban, comprised in large part by residential homes although there are clusters of commercial properties. These towns generally act as seashore towns with populations expanding during spring and summer and substantially reducing in the winter.

Four discharge pipes and their associated outfalls discharge effluent from six wastewater treatment facilities into the waters of AOSouth. Wastewater treatment plant outfalls require the designation of safety zones or Prohibited areas that act as buffers for dilution.

AOSouth shellfish growing waters also receive input from the Great Egg Harbor River, Tuckahoe River, and additionally receive contributions from a large number of smaller creeks that feed into these rivers or the back bay waters to the west of coastal AOSouth. All of these waterways make their way to the ocean by way of six inlets along the AOSouth shoreline.

Status: In total, AOSouth is currently comprised of 109,860 shellfish growing waters acres. This acreage is comprised of 95,679 acres of Approved waters or 87.09% is Approved for shellfishing and 14,181 acres or 12.91 % are designated as Prohibited (no shellfishing allowed).

Most recent Reappraisal Report

Most recent Sanitary Survey Report

AOSouth Shellfish Classification

Click map to enlarge


AOSouth Photo AOSouth Photo AOSouth Photo AOSouth Photo

Photo Credit: NJDEP

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Last Updated: November 17, 2017