Volunteers needed to count shellfishers in Drayton Harbor

Volunteers would survey this length of beach in Drayton Harbor along Semiahmoo spit.  Photo by Steve Guntli

Volunteers would survey this length of beach in Drayton Harbor along Semiahmoo spit.
Photo by Steve Guntli

One of the great things about living on the coast is that just about anyone can go hunting for clams, oysters or mussels. Local and state agencies are interested in finding out exactly how popular that activity is in Drayton Harbor.

A length of western Drayton Harbor along Semiahmoo spit was recently opened for shellfish harvesting from February to October. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Whatcom County Department of Health are looking for volunteers to survey shellfishing activity throughout the season to determine the activity’s popularity.

Volunteers will be asked to monitor a length of the shellfishing area and count how many people are gathering oysters, clams and mussels from the beach. Each survey will take approximately 20 minutes, not including travel time.

The surveys will take place during designated low tides, and volunteers will select which days they wish to conduct their surveys. Binoculars are not required but would be useful, especially if the volunteer doesn’t want to traipse out onto the sandflats.

Surveying will take place on 30 dates between March and September, with the majority of the days occurring in April, May and June.

Holly Faulstich, the water quality planner with Whatcom County Public Works, will provide training. For more information or to sign up as a volunteer, contact Faulstich at 360/778-6290.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

3 × five =