Waterlife

Killary Fjord Shellfish which is located in Leenane, Ireland, is a great plot of land that is home to a innovative family of mussel farmers. The family owns at least 500 acres and multiple homes, sheds, and fishing equipment to utilize on the fjord nearby. The best part of the area is on the fjord—250 lines of mussel rope, in which 18 is owned by the family. The family has been farming mussels since 1989, and its innovator, Simon, is considered a pioneer in this type of farming in brackish water (salt and freshwater). A very important aspect of this type of farming is the fact that is does little to the environment besides take up space, and is a great way to have self-sustainable food surplus year round. The family is fortunate to have inherited all of the land, but they have done incredible things with it. Most of all they have turned a sustainable seafood farm into a company that can produce enough surplus to sell to local restaurants and markets. The family can sell the mussels to a processing plant for 45 cents a kilo, and to a restaurant for three euro. The family said “not only do we make more money feeding the locals, we also like to support those around us rather than the industrial side of things”. They have made quite a business out of the farming, and I can assure you the mussels are delicious. If you take a look at the picture, each buoy has a rope that is attached in a grid like formation. Where every buoy is located, there is a rope that falls down to the bottom of the water. Each rope is pulled up revealing an anchor and around 40-50 yield of mussels. After picking up the rope, the mussels get scraped off and cleaned by a brush like machine called an agor. After being cleaned the mussel are put in a bin that keeps them fresh which can hold 250 kilos. The mussels are shipped out using a family owned van or eaten on the spot for 10 euro a head, which is all you can eat mussels and clams. Overall Killary farms is a highly regarded place to visit in Ireland and they know how to live off the sea.

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