Date of Award



© 2021 Samuel Feldman

Document Type


Degree Name

Professional Science Master's (PSM) In Ocean Food Systems


Marine Science

First Advisor

Adam St. Gelais

Second Advisor

Barry Costa-Pierce

Third Advisor

Susie Arnold

Fourth Advisor

Dan Devereaux


This study identified oyster farming practices that have the potential to increase the sustainability of Maine’s oyster industry while increasing its value. Practices aligned with the principles of the ecosystem approach to aquaculture were gleaned from semi-structured interviews and surveys of oyster farmers and their buyers. Themes from interview transcripts were developed using thematic analysis. Survey data was used to triangulate interview transcript data. As a result, sustainable oyster farming practices were identified that had direct and indirect connections to the value of Maine’s oysters. Practices with direct connections to increased oyster value included conducting and advertising actions of increased stewardship in the coastal areas around farms. Practices with indirect connections to increased oyster value included 1) monitoring water quality to prevent exceeding production carrying capacity, and 2) involving a broader spectrum of community members as stakeholders in planning oyster aquaculture development at all scales.


Professional Science Masters Thesis

Advisors St. Gelais and Costa-Pierce are UNE faculty members; advisor Moreno-Baez is with Tufts University; advisor Arnold is with Island Institute; advisor Devereaux is with Mere Point Oyster Company.

SFeldman_UNEPSMthesisDUNEperm8.22.21.jpg (158 kB)
Author permission for DUNE placement.