Razor clam diggers will have one final opportunity during the spring season to get out onto local beaches.
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) shellfish managers today confirmed the final coastal razor clam digs of the season can proceed as planned from May 4-14.
“This last tide series had lots of happy diggers, and we’re anticipating more of the same for this upcoming tide series to close out the season,” said Bryce Blumenthal, a WDFW coastal shellfish biologist.
On all open beaches – Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks, and Copalis – the daily limit is 20 razor clams instead of the usual 15. Each digger’s clams must be kept in a separate container, and all diggers must keep the first 20 clams they dig, regardless of size or condition.
Not all beaches are open for every dig, so diggers are encouraged to make sure their intended destination is open before heading out. The most successful digging occurs within two hours before the listed time of low tide.
Digging is allowed from midnight until 12 p.m. only on May 4-10. Since low tides on May 11-14 are near or after 12 p.m., digging will be allowed from 4 a.m. until 4 p.m. for those specific days only.
The following digs during morning (a.m.) low tides are scheduled (digging allowed 4 a.m. until 4 p.m. on May 11-14 only):
- May 4, Thursday, 6:32 AM; -0.2 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
- May 5, Friday, 7:10 AM; -0.8 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
- May 6, Saturday, 7:49 AM; -1.2 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
- May 7, Sunday, 8:31 AM; -1.4 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
- May 8, Monday, 9:15 AM; -1.5 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
- May 9, Tuesday, 10:03 AM; -1.3 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
- May 10, Wednesday, 10:57 AM; -1.0 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
- May 11, Thursday, 11:56 AM; -0.6 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks (digging allowed 4 AM until 4 PM only)
- May 12, Friday, 12:59 PM; -0.2 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis (digging allowed 4 AM until 4 PM only)
- May 13, Saturday, 2:03 PM; 0.1 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks (digging allowed 4 AM until 4 PM only)
- May 14, Sunday, 3:03 PM; 0.4 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis (digging allowed 4 AM until 4 PM only)
WDFW plans to announce tentative digging opportunities in early fall for the 2023-2024 season via the WDFW razor clam webpage. This summer, WDFW will monitor, domoic acid, a natural marine toxin produced by certain types of marine algae, that can be harmful or fatal if consumed in sufficient quantities. More information about domoic acid, as well as current levels at ocean beaches, can be found on WDFW’s domoic acid webpage and on the DOH webpage.
As in past years, WDFW is asking beachgoers to avoid disturbing nesting snowy plovers – a small bird with gray wings and a white breast – by staying out of the dunes and posted areas along the southwest coast. Snowy plover nests are nearly invisible, and it is vital to give birds the space to live and thrive during nesting period, especially along the southern end on Twin Harbors – known as Midway Beach – and the north end of Long Beach.
Avoid leaving leftover food or trash – which attracts predators – on the beach and picnic areas, keep pets on a leash, stay out of dunes, and avoid areas which are clearly marked with posted signs. When driving on the beach, please respect the 25 MPH speed limit and enter only at designated access points. Stay on the hard-packed sand near the high tide line to avoid crushing clam beds and snowy plover nests.
Several sections of coastal beaches are closed to driving between now through Labor Day, except on days and hours when the recreational razor clam digging is open. These areas are clearly marked with signs.
To participate, razor clam diggers must purchase their new 2023-2024 recreational fishing or shellfishing licenses, available from hundreds of license vendors around the state. All diggers age 15 or older must have an applicable fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. To be notified of in-season rule changes as they are announced sign up for email notifications at wdfw.wa.gov/about/lists.