A Very Happy Thanksgiving in Franklin County

Folks there received word Wednesday night they can go back to work oystering in Apalachicola Bay.

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson reopened the western end of Apalachicola Bay to oyster and shellfish harvesting Thanksgiving morning at sunrise.

The bay had been closed since September 2 due to red tide. Before that the bay had been seriously damaged by several Gulf of Mexico hurricanes. The storms and the red tide devastated the oystering industry in the Apalachicola and Eastpoint areas.

State agriculture biologists have been running weekly water quality tests and they finally feel confident there is no longer any danger of red tide contamination of the shellfish.

When the sun came up Thanksgiving morning dozens of the oyster boats left the docks and headed into the bay to start bringing in the first harvest in at least two months.