Southold, NY

Shellfisher Preserve

Project Type

Stewardship, Farms for the Future



Things to do

Nature Study, Paddling



Shellfisher Rd, Southold, NY 11971


Donated to the Peconic Land Trust in 1996 by the Plock Family, Shellfisher Preserve is a fully operational mariculture facility that is contributing to our enjoyment and health in so many ways: the revitalized shellfish operation not only provides us with oysters, clams and scallops for the local market, but it also grows and distributes shellfish through seed programs that improve the water quality of Southold Bay and beyond.

John Plock founded the Shelter Island Oyster Company on the site in 1935, but due to personal circumstances the maricultural facility was shut down in the late 1970s. In the early 1990s, the Plocks came to the Trust, and working with John v.H. Halsey and Tim Caufield created a limited development plan for their 21.8-acre parcel -- which permanently protected 14 of those acres in 1992.

Four years later, the Plocks donated the protected land to the Trust.

Want to learn more? Check out Alec Hirschfeld's documentary video, Out Here in the Fields: Shellfisher Preserve:

Working with Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Suffolk County’s Marine program, and a grant from the National Grid Foundation and the United States Department of Agriculture, the Trust restored the shellfish facility. Shellfisher Preserve is now managed by CCE and the Trust — and is leased to a cooperative of shellfish farmers, Noank Aquaculture Cooperative, who are growing oysters, hard clams, and bay scallops.

We thank the Plocks for seeking out a conservation plan for their land and helping to keep alive the tradition of shellfish farming on Long Island.

For those interested in the family’s history, in 2014 The Shelter Island Reporter ran a fantastic story featuring Bill Plock and his memories of his dad and grandfather and growing up around the Shelter Island Oyster Company. Read it here.

We are also grateful for the support of CCE, National Grid, the USDA, and Noank in the preservation and on-going management of the preserve!


Visitor Information

We would love to show you around! Visits to Shellfisher Preserve are by appointment only. To schedule a visit, please contact Pam Greene at 631.283.3195.

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Shellfisher Preserve

Shellfisher Rd, Southold, NY 11971

Things To Do

Nature Study
Nature Study

Get Involved

Special: Next time you are out and about and see "Peconic Pearls" oysters on the menu consider ordering a dozen.

Peconic Pearls are sold with a 5 cents premium, which is donated to the Trust in support of water quality projects.

To learn more about Peconic Pearls and the work of the Noank Aquaculture Cooperative, visit their website:

All ways to get involved