Mussels are native to Alaska. Every summer, adult mussels spawn releasing billions of babies into the water column. The baby mussels, called seed or spat, are free swimming larvae for about a month before settling down to grow on a surface in the water. Mussels especially like to settle on ropes,which makes it easy for us to collect them to grow into the mussels we eat.
Mussels are seeded on a mussel rope where they grow suspended in the water column below the mussel raft feeding on algae that naturally grows in the water.
Mussel rafts are built to withstand winter Alaska conditions of ice, wind and waves.
The mighty mussel processor, Labial Palps, ready for action. The Labial Palps was recommissioned as a mussel processor in 2013, complete with a fresh coat of lipstick and a mussel declumper. The vessel was originally named Lips. Labial palps is the word for mussel lips or feeding appendages.
Mussels being processed through the mussel declupmer