OLYMPIA, Wash. - State fishery managers approved a morning razor clam dig at four ocean beaches this weekend (March 10-11) after marine toxin tests confirmed that the clams on those beaches are safe to eat.
The dig, scheduled at Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks beaches, marks the first time this season that clam diggers will be allowed to harvest razor clams on morning tides. No digging will be allowed after noon at any of those beaches.
This is the first in a series of multi-day morning digs tentatively scheduled in the coming weeks, a lot of people wait all year to dig razor clams on morning tides. - Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)
Morning low tides and beach openings for this weekend are:
Saturday, March 10, (7:39 a.m. -0.3 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
Sunday, March 11, (9:28 a.m. -0.4 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
Ayres recommends that diggers hit the beach about two hours before morning low tide for best results. He also reminds prospective diggers that Daylight Savings Time begins March 11, which is why there is an extra hour between the low tides this weekend.
It's important that everyone is operating on Daylight Savings Time for the dig on Sunday, because the beaches close to digging at noon
Under state law, diggers can take 15 razor clams per day, and are required to keep the first 15 they dig. Each digger's clams must be kept in a separate container.
All diggers age 15 or older must have a 2011/2012 fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. Licensing options range from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, which can be purchased on WDFW's website (https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov ) and from license vendors around the state.
Shellfish managers have also tentatively proposed two other morning digs through early April, although final approval will depend on the results of future marine toxin tests. Proposed beach openings, along with morning low tides, for those digs are:
March 24, Saturday (8:25 a.m., +0.3 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
March 25, Sunday (8:59 a.m., +0.3 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
April 7, Saturday (7:36 a.m., -1.2 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks, Kalaloch
April 8, Sunday (8:23 a.m., -1.5 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks, Kalaloch
April 9, Monday (9:11 a.m., -1.5 ft.): Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Kalaloch
Updated information on razor clam seasons is available on WDFW's toll-free Shellfish Hotline at (866) 880-5431.