Environmental factors controlling oyster shell deposits, Texas Coast




Scott, Alan J.

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Bureau of Economic Geology, University of Texas at Austin


In recent years the demand for cement has increased tremendously along the Gulf Coast. Oyster shell is the only significant source of the lime needed for the cement for a distance of over 100 miles, and as such is being actively exploited by several cement companies. Dredging of living oyster reefs in the Texas bays is limited by low, therefore, it is desirable to develop exploration methods for buried reefs. In the past, exploration programs have been based upon surveys with steel probes. The State of Texas also has completed a sonoprobe survey of some of the bays during the early developmental stages of acoustical profiling apparatus. A more effective exploration program could be developed based upon a knowledge of the environmental tolerances of oysters, the geologic and depositional history of the area, and an analysis of cores to determine paleoenvironmental conditions. Large areas could be eliminated from consideration and favorable areas studied in more detail by applying these techniques.


22 pgs.


oysters, shells, environmental factors, oyster reefs, dredging, environmental aspects, oyster shell