The next coastal razor clam digs were approved, and are set to begin Wednesday, April 24 at Twin Harbors with more beaches opening in the days ahead.
Digging will be open April 24-30 at Twin Harbors; April 26-28 at Long Beach, Mocrocks and Copalis; and April 29 at Twin Harbors and Mocrocks. Digging is open until noon each day.
The previous digs on April 9-14 produced a good number of razor clams.
“It was pretty good with a lot of happy diggers, and limits (the first 15 clams dug is a daily limit) for most people,” said Dan Ayres, the head state Fish and Wildlife coastal shellfish manager.
A total of 296,582 diggers turned out April 9-14 with 20,477 clams averaging 14.5 clams per digger.
Since the season began Oct. 13 through April 14 a total of 94,389 digger trips at Long Beach produced 1,297,660 clams (24,835 were clam wastage); 57,367 at Twin Harbors had 789,807 (18,609); 55,067 at Copalis had 775,918 (13,093); and 33,559 at Mocrocks had 487,564 (4,472).
A total of 240,362 digger trips coastwide have harvested 3,389,827 (61,009).
So far, Long Beach has reached 71.6 percent of the total allowable harvest of clams; Twin Harbors is 43.0 percent; Copalis is 73.6 percent; and Mocrocks is 54.1 percent.
Depending on how things pan out and if enough razor clams are left to harvest state Fish and Wildlife could have more digs planned in May.
Low tides: Wednesday, April 24, minus-0.3 feet at 6:10 a.m.; Thursday, April 25, -1.0 at 6:54 a.m.; Friday, April 26, -1.5 at 7:38 a.m.; Saturday, April 27, -1.7 at 8:24 a.m.; Sunday, April 29, -1.5 at 10:01 a.m.; and Tuesday, April 30, -1.0 at 10:55 a.m.
In a news release, state Fish and Wildlife cautions clam diggers, and other beachgoers to avoid disturbing western snowy plovers, which nest on coastal beaches from April through August. The small white birds are listed under the federal Endangered Species Act as threatened and by the state as endangered.
“We urge clam diggers to be careful when driving on the beach or walking through the dunes,” Ayres said. “Under state law, all vehicles are required to travel along the extreme upper limit of the hard sand. When in doubt, follow the path marked by multiple tire tracks.”
Ayres points out that diggers avoid signed upland beach areas at Long Beach and Twin Harbors, which are closed to protect nesting western snowy plovers.
At Long Beach, the closed areas are located north of the Oysterville Road from the state park boundary north to Leadbetter Point. At Twin Harbors, the closed areas are located from just south of Midway Beach Road to the first beach-access trail at Grayland Beach State Park.
(Photo courtesy of Mark Yuasa)