Irene, Lee not to blame for shellfish die-offState biologists said a major oyster die-off in the Chesapeake Bay was likely caused by record fresh water during spring and summer storms - not by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, as some had believed.
In two areas of the Chesapeake north of the Bay Bridge, biologists found 79 percent and 74 percent of the oysters dead. On two bars, they found not a single live oyster.
The few oysters that were alive were "bloated, watery and translucent," according to the Department of Natural Resources. Those oysters may not live much longer.