Olympia — Two ocean beaches will open for the last razor clam dig of the spring season starting May 4, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.
Twin Harbors will open for digging on morning tides May 4, joined by Long Beach May 5 and 6. Each day’s dig on those beaches must be completed by noon.
WDFW approved the digs after marine toxin tests showed the clams were safe to eat.
The dig is planned only for Twin Harbors and Long Beach because the recreational harvest has reached annual quotas on other beaches, said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for WDFW.
“We’re pleased to have clams available on these two beaches for a final dig in May,” said Ayres. “We’ve had a great season this year. Even in April, individuals were averaging about 14 clams a trip. This last dig is the icing on the cake.”
Ayres advises those who don’t have a 2007-08 license, to buy one before heading out.
Razor clam diggers have several licensing options, including annual razor clam, shellfish/seaweed or combination licenses, all valid through March 31, 2008. Diggers can also purchase a three-day razor clam license, or a temporary combination license valid from one to five days.
Fishing and hunting licenses are available on-line (https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/), via WDFW’s toll-free phone line (1-866-246-9453) and from retail dealers throughout the state (http://wdfw.wa.gov/licensing/vendors/vendors).
Ayres recommends that clam enthusiasts start digging at least one hour before low tide. Low tides during the planned dig are as follows:
- Friday, May 4, 8:35 a.m., -0.9 ft: Twin Harbors only
- Saturday, May 5, 9:12 a.m., -0.8 ft: Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- Sunday, May 6, 9:50 a.m., -0.6 ft: Twin Harbors, Long Beach
Under WDFW rules, harvesters may take no more than 15 razor clams and must keep the first 15 taken, regardless of size or condition. Each digger's limit must be kept in a separate container.
Locations of the two razor-clam digging beaches are:
- Long Beach, from the Columbia River north jetty to Leadbetter Point.
- Twin Harbors, from the south jetty at the mouth of Grays Harbor south to the mouth of Willapa Bay.
WDFW expects the 2007-08 season to start in October following the 2007 summer stock assessment, Ayres said.