LONG BEACH, Wash. — Razor clam season on south Washington beaches will remain closed until at least early December due to lingering effects of a marine toxin bloom that began late this spring.
“The latest razor clam domoic acid results just came in and they are still elevated at both Long Beach and Twin Harbors, which means the earliest we might open that fishery will be early December (at least on those two beaches.) We are still waiting for the Copalis and Mocrocks results,” Washington Coastal Shellfish Manager Dan Ayres said Thursday.
Levels of the toxin, which causes amnesic shellfish poisoning, must be below 20 parts per million in razor clams for two tests in a row before a season opening is allowed.
Clamming is one of Western Washington’s most popular traditional outdoor activities, attracting thousands to beaches in what is otherwise an economic off-season. Cancellation of an entire season has been estimated to keep at least $10 million in direct spending out of coastal cash registers and bank accounts.
The Long Beach Peninsula and the Twin Harbors beach between the mouths of Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor account for the majority of clamming in most years.