Two razor clam digs have been tentatively scheduled for October, the first with digs at most coastal beach areas.
The digs will take place provided that marine toxin tests show the clams are safe to eat. The decision on the first dig will be announced after test results are received next week.
The digs at Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks were scheduled even as the state Department of Fish and Wildlife continues to accept public comments on openings for the rest of the season.
“We’re still in the process of determining additional fall and winter digging opportunities, but we wanted to give people a chance to start making plans for October,” said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager, in a department news release.
The state already held a five-day dig earlier this month at Twin Harbors because tests done during the summer point to another year of strong razor clam populations and digging opportunities.
While the best digging takes place an hour or two before low tide, diggers are urged to be cautious because most of these digs will take place after it gets dark. In addition to having lights with them while digging, people should also mark the location of their vehicle. Ayres said it is easy to lose track of where you park after you have been moving along the beach while digging along the waterline.
A report on last year’s season and prospects for this year is posted online at wdfw.wa.gov. Written comments on plans for this season’s openings can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org through Monday.
Under state rules, harvesters may take no more than 15 razor clams and must keep the first 15 they dig, regardless of size or condition. Each digger’s limit must be kept in a separate container.
All diggers must have an applicable 2013-14 fishing license to dig razor clams on any beach. A license is required for anyone age 15 or older.
Digging at Kalaloch will not be open because managers at Olympic National Park and the state agency are concerned about the low clam populations there.
Here are the dates, beaches, and evening low tides for the proposed digs in October:
Friday: 6:56 p.m.; 0 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks
Saturday: 7:36 p.m.; -0.4 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks
Oct. 6: 8:17 p.m.; -0.7 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors Mocrocks
Oct. 7: 9:48 p.m.; -0.8 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
Oct. 8: 10:40 p.m.; -0.4 feet; Twin Harbors
Oct. 17: 6:15 p.m.; -0.2 feet; Twin Harbors
Oct. 18: 6:57 p.m.; -0.6 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks
Oct. 19: 7:38 p.m.; -0.7 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks
Oct. 20: 8:16 p.m.; -0.7 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
Oct. 21: 8:55 p.m.; -0.4 feet; Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
Oct. 22: 9:34 p.m.; -0.1 feet; Twin Harbors