WDFW: ‘Long season of uninterrupted digging’ to end with final slate of clam digs


The final seven days of coastal razor clam digs of the season will proceed as planned from May 6-12, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) coastal shellfish managers confirmed Friday.

“We are excited to send off a nice long season of uninterrupted digging with a closing tide series that contains the lowest tides of the year” said Bryce Blumenthal, a WDFW coastal shellfish biologist. “Between Sept. 29, 2023, through May 12, we offered a total of 250 digs on the four beaches across 100 days.”

Not all coastal beaches are open for every dig, so diggers are encouraged to make sure their intended destination is open before heading out. Optimal digging occurs between one and two hours before the listed time of low tide.

Shellfish and seafood enthusiasts can also start making plans to attend the Long Beach Razor Clam Festival on May 10-11. This long-running event celebrates the unique contribution of razor clams to Washington’s culture and coastal communities.

The following digs will proceed as scheduled, after marine toxin results from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) showed razor clams are safe to eat.

Confirmed dates during morning (midnight to noon) low tides:

  • May 6, Monday, 5:41 a.m.; -0.7 feet; Mocrocks
  • May 7, Tuesday, 6:28 a.m.; -1.5 feet; Long Beach, Mocrocks
  • May 8, Wednesday, 7:13 a.m.; -2.0 feet; Long Beach, Copalis
  • May 9, Thursday, 7:57 a.m.; -2.1 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
  • May 10, Friday, 8:41 a.m.; -1.9 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks (Long Beach Razor Clam Festival)
  • May 11, Saturday, 9:27 a.m.; -1.4 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks (Long Beach Razor Clam Festival)
  • May 12, Sunday, 10:16 a.m.; -0.8 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis

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 — the north end of Long Beach and the area north of Ocean City on Copalis Beach., according to WDFW. 

WDFW asks diggers to 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, the speed limit is 25 mph, and motorists should only access the beach from marked entry points. Motorists should 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 now through Labor Day, except on days and hours when the recreational razor clam digging is open. These areas are clearly marked with signs.

On all open beaches, the daily limit is 15 clams per person. Each digger’s clams must be kept in a separate container, and all diggers must keep the first 15 clams they dig, regardless of size or condition, to prevent waste.

To dig razor clams, Washingtonians must have a valid 2024-2025 recreational hunting and fishing licenses. Licenses can be purchased from WDFW’s licensing website, and 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.

WDFW plans to announce tentative digging opportunities in early fall for the 2024-2025 season via the WDFW razor clam webpage. This summer, WDFW will conduct population assessments and regularly monitor domoic acid levels, 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.