spat algae cylinders (1)

Algae Culture

spat algae seacaps (1)

Algae Culture

spat algae cultures (1)

Algae Culture

SPAT Algae Culture Facility Fundraising Effort


Project Update 2021

Algae Room Before & After

While our beloved SPAT program endured an unprecedented year in 2020, we have been able to construct a custom, fully functional autonomous algae culture facility for SPAT projects. How was this possible?
Last November SPAT embarked upon its 1st targeted fundraiser. Because of the overwhelming support we received, our new algae room was constructed and is now operational.
Financial backing was one main component of this vision.
The hard work and commitment of staff and volunteers was the pulse bringing this vision to life.
Thank you for your dedication and support!


BEFORE 360° photo

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AFTER (Video)


New SPAT Algae Room

Fulfill a vision for a fully functional and autonomous algae room for SPAT projects.

In an effort to improve and expand on the SPAT shellfish hatchery production system, we are proud to announce the construction and implementation of an autonomous microalgae culture facility. For the past 19 years, SPAT has relied on cultured microalgae, the essential food needed for shellfish production; on Cornell hatchery facilities; and the staff dedicated to its production. Sharing algae with the marine center hatcheries has always been a challenge due to the demands of production from the various programs. The fragile nature of algae culture also disallowed the participation of SPAT members in the culture procedure. In 2019, SPAT volunteers began a pilot effort to grow algae autonomously with outstanding results. With this success in hand, SPAT is now in a position to build our own system which will allow us to expand on our goals of teaching and growing shellfish by the SPAT community. 

Project Cost

The cost of this facility is estimated between $25,000 and $50,000; in order to produce a dynamic, efficient, and appropriately scaled state of the art system that will add to the SPAT training experience. In order to absorb this expense, SPAT is partaking in our first targeted fundraising effort to attempt to meet or supplement the project cost. There is no required obligation of SPAT members to participate in this effort. This is just a way of reaching out to ease the SPAT coffers. Because we have never done this before, we want to make this a fun effort and not as painful as some fundraising campaigns.

The fundraising will run through the end of 2019. Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. All  contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Donations in any amount are welcome and incentives will be offered for certain levels of donations. At the end of the event, a plaque will be made with the names of all donors (anonymity will be honored), and will be placed in the new facility.

Here are some incentives for donations. The full scale boats will be offered on a first in basis as we are not going to build additional units. Shucking boats will be built to order, including color choice and customized bow plaque. Shucking boats will be fitted with drains and decks.

$5,000 Donation (one available)
9’6” sailing nutshell pram

$3,000 Donation (one available)
9’6” rowing nutshell pram

$750 Donation
8’ Gloucester light gull oyster shucking/display boat (1/2 scale)

$500 Donation
6’ Gloucester light gull oyster shucking/display boat (1/4 scale)

$250 Donation
Deluxe oyster shucking kit (chainmail glove, knife, SPAT apron)

$100 Donation
SPAT cap and tee

Thank you in advance for your interest in this project! We will keep everyone posted on the progress. If you have any questions or concerns, just drop either  Darci Bielenda or Kim Tetrault a line.


Kim Tetrault
Community Aquaculture Specialist

Last updated February 22, 2021