Razor clamming on Clatsop County beaches will reopen Sunday, Oct. 1, following a 16-month closure, officials said.
Razor clamming has been closed since July 2016 due to toxins found in the clams and an annual closure to protect newly-set young clams.
While other parts of the state’s coast have been open to razor clamming, Clatsop County beaches are the most popular spot and account for 90 percent of Oregon’s harvest, officials said in a news release.
The Oregon Department of Agriculture tests shellfish toxins twice per month to determine if razor clams and other shellfish are safe to eat. The two most recent tests show clams are safe, officials said.
The last time Clatsop County’s season was open in summer 2016, razor clammers experienced a record year, with most reaching their daily bag limit of 15 in a short time.
Clammers will find different conditions when they return on Oct. 1 as an annual survey found significantly lower numbers of razor clams.
“In 2016, abundance peaked and surveys estimated 16 million razor clams in the 18-mile stretch between the Columbia River south jetty and Tillamook Head,” said Matt Hunter, ODFW’s Shellfish Project Leader. “This year, the estimate is just 3 million clams in that area.”
The bag limit for razor clams is the first 15 dug, with no sorting or releasing allowed.
For more information on clamming tests, call the shellfish hotline, 800-448-2474.
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