The state Department of Health has lifted the ban on recreational harvesting of molluscan shellfish in northern Whatcom County, except for varnish clams.
That means most molluscan shellfish can be harvested from Point Whitethorn north to the Canadian border, including Point Roberts.
Levels of the biotoxins that cause paralytic and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning have dropped to safe levels in those areas.
But for the rest of Whatcom County beaches, recreational shellfish harvesting remained closed south of Point Whitehorn to the Skagit County border, including all of Larrabee State Park.
Crab meat isn't affected, but "crab butter" and crab entrails can harbor the biotoxins, which are not destroyed by cooking or freezing.
Molluscan shellfish sold in stores are tested before they are shipped to retailers and are safe to eat.
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