Friday, April 23, 2010

Crab and Oyster Stories, Eastern Shore Type.

You have had your Fish Story's,so how about some Crab and Oyster Story's, Unordinary Everyday Stories.

All You Ever Need To Know About Oysters

On the coast of Florida, abounding in oysters and crabs, these two marine nations carry on hostilities against each other in a manner never noticed in any other place. The oysters actually feed on the spawn or young of the crab, by closing on them as they pass and detaining them until the are digested. and the old crabs, as if in revenge for the murder of their offspring frequently regale themselves on young oysters. But the crab in plucking out the oyster from the shell is frequently himself caught and if the oyster be large and strong enough the crab is detained by the claw until he parts with it or otherwise perishes. Now, when the oyster has attained full growth and strength. a crab is compelled to devise stratagem, unparalleled, and which I would have put no faith had I not been an eye witness of the fact several times. The oyster lying as usual with his shell wide open, the crab approaches with a pebble in one of its claws, then suddenly thrust the pebble into the mouth of the oyster which prevents its shell to fully shut closed. With great 'sang froid' avails himself of his enemy's embarrassment and with his claws nicks out the meat of the oyster from between the distended shell.
I have heard also that in the bay of Apalachi the racoons came down in great numbers to the bayside at low water and finding the oyster open on the beach would with a sudden jerk of a paw, wipe the meat from the shell very adroitly before the poor oyster had time to close up on him. The racoons are so fond of this meal that they will wade out some distance from shore in pursuit of their prey. Here it has happened, either because of the toughness of the oyster or the slowness of the racoon, close down on his paw. When this happens he inevitably perishes for the oyster is fixed fast to it bed below and as the animal struggles the oyster holds fast with all its force, and the tide rises and the racoon is drowned. An 1811 story.

There are at least 2000 square miles, that's 1,580,000 acres of natural oyster beds within the jurisdiction of the state of Virginia. Allowing for 1/8 of a bushel to each square rod of these beds, remember a square rod is equal to 30-1/4 square yards, and allowing the quantity of oysters therein or thereon, it may be reckoned that there be 784,000,000 bushels.
Oysters are reproduced at a rapid rate as the oyster is immensely prolific. Each mother of the family furnishes, every year, generally during the month of May, enough spawn to give birth to 3 million infants. Under favorable conditions, it takes about three years for these new embryo oysters to obtain an edible size. An 1857 story

The Abbe Freshon, a French Priest, was supposed to be the greatest glutton at Oysters in existence. A considerable bet was made that a Dutch Captain of a trading sailing vessel could surpass him.
At the Roche de Concafe, at Paris, a breakfast was ordered up where the bet was to be decided.
The Abbe ate one hundred and thirty eight dozen, some 1656 oysters, and then gave in. The Dutchman did not relax until he had eaten one hundred and eighty six dozen, 3383 oysters, with which he drank eight bottles of white wine. Then spying a well cooked fowl, untouched, he ate it all and drank two other bottles of wine. An 1817 story.

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