In recognition of the importance of oyster reefs to overall coastal ecosystem functions, large- and small-scale restoration of oyster reef habitats is ongoing in most coastal U.S. states. However, a consensus on what constitutes a “successful” or for that matter failed shellfish restoration project currently does not exist. The most commonly used metric of success until recently was the presence of market-sized oysters (75 mm or 3” SH), which is a fishery metric, even though large numbers of smaller oysters (or other filter- feeders initially) may be of equal or greater ecological significance.