The Oregon Seal Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife  
 » ODFW Home    » 2008 News Releases
News Releases for the year 2008
2023 Releases | 2022 Releases | 2021 Releases | 2020 Releases | 2019 Releases | 2018 Releases | 2017 Releases | 2016 Releases | 2015 Releases | 2014 Releases | 2013 Releases | 2012 Releases | 2011 Releases | 2010 Releases
facebook twitter youtube rss feed
emailReceive News Release Updates by E-mail Media Contacts

Razor clam digging reopens on Clatsop beaches Oct. 1



September 25, 2008


Brandon Ford (541) 867-4741
Fax: (541) 867-0311

NEWPORT – It’s the classic good news-bad news scenario: the good news is that you can dig razor clams on Clatsop beaches again and there are lots of clams; the bad news is they will be small.

Wednesday, Oct. 1, razor clam diggers may return to the Clatsop beaches after the annual conservation closure, which lasts from July 15 to Sept. 30 each year to protect newly-set clams. Shellfish biologists worry that diggers may be disappointed in the size of what they find when they return to the most productive razor clam beaches in the state.

“The clams are as small as I’ve ever seen them this time of year because of a late set, probably as a result of the massive storm systems we had this winter,” said Matthew Hunter, ODFW’s Shellfish and Estuary Project Leader. “During our summer clam surveys the average size was just under 3 inches. That’s not very big.”

On a recent collection dig to test for shellfish toxins Hunter dug 20 clams and the largest one was 3.5 inches. While clams this small are just as good to eat as larger clams, many diggers consider them less desirable because there is not as much meat and the shells are even more fragile than a larger razor clam. The smaller clams can also be more difficult to clean.

“You must keep the first 15 clams you dig, regardless of their size or condition,” Hunter said. “Reburying a razor clam, even if its shell is unbroken, usually results in the clam’s death.”

ODFW reminds clam diggers to help ensure clamming opportunities in the future by following these clam harvesting rules:

  • The bag limit is the first 15 clams taken, regardless of size – small or broken clams must be included in the bag limit.
  • All clam diggers, regardless of age, must dig their own clams, carry their own container to hold harvested clams, and may not possess more than one limit of clams in the clamming area.
  • Clam diggers 14 years and older must have a shellfish license to harvest clams.
  • Razor clams may be taken by hand, shovel or with a clam tube at least 4 inches in diameter.

Here are some hints to avoid small or broken clams:

  • Look for siphon holes or “shows” that are dime-sized or larger to avoid small clams. Small shows, especially those smaller than the diameter of a pencil, are associated with small clams.
  • If you dig several small clams, move to a different area.
  • Broken or small clams are still edible.  The cleaning process might take longer but they are still safe to eat.

For more information about razor clams, digging techniques, and preventing wastage check the ODFW razor clam website




About Us | Fishing | Crabbing & Clamming | Big Game Hunting | Game Bird Hunting | Wildlife Viewing | License / Regs | Conservation | Living with Wildlife | Education | Workday Login

ODFW Home | Driving Directions | Employee Directory | Social Media | | File Formats | Employee Webmail | ODFW License Agents

4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE   ::   Salem, OR 97302   ::    Main Phone (503) 947-6000 or (800) 720-ODFW [6339]

Do you have a question or comment for ODFW? Contact ODFW's Public Service Representative at:
Share your opinion or comments on a Fish and Wildlife Commission issue at:
Do you need this information in an alternative format or language? Contact 503-947-6042 or click here.

   © ODFW. All rights reserved. This page was last updated: 06/01/2010 11:52 AM