OLYMPIA, Wash. - State fishery managers have approved a morning razor clam dig at several ocean beaches March 24-25 after marine toxin tests confirmed that the clams on those beaches are safe to eat.
Four beaches – Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks and Copalis – will be open for digging March 24, and all except Copalis also will be open for digging Sunday, March 25.
No digging will be allowed either day after noon at any of those beaches.
“We’re nearing the end of the season at Copalis, but we still have more clams available for harvest on other beaches,” said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). “We have tentatively scheduled another dig in April and perhaps more to come.”
Morning low tides and beach openings for the upcoming dig 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
Ayres noted that the March 24 dig coincides with the Ocean Shores Razor Clam Festival, featuring craft booths and a chowder cook-off. Since Ocean Shores – along with Oyhut, Ocean City and Copalis – is part of Copalis Beach, it will not be open to digging March 25.
Aryes cautions diggers to observe the boundary between Mocrocks Beach and Copalis Beach, which are adjacent to one another north of Grays Harbor. Mocrocks Beach, which will be open to digging both days, lies north of the Copalis River and includes Iron Springs, Roosevelt Beach, Seabrook, Pacific Beach and Moclips.
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 valid 2011-2012 fishing license to harvest razor clams those days. However, starting April 1, diggers will need a new 2012-13 to participate in additional openings this season.
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 tentatively proposed a morning dig in early April, although final approval will depend on the results of future marine toxin tests. Proposed beach openings, along with morning low tides, for that dig are:
- 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.