Shellfish Digging in Birch Bay
Before You Start to Dig.
• Check the shellfish safety map for beach closures and advisories on the day of digging.
Or you can call us at 360-236-3330 or Whatcom County health department during weekday business hours.
• Buy a shellfish license before digging on public tidelands. You can purchase you license at:
Bay Center Market - 8050 Harborview Road (Corner Birch Bay Drive and Harborview Rd.) 360-371-7233
• Follow Department of Fish and Wildlife regulations for seasons, size and harvest limits, and emergency rule updates when digging
on public tidelands.
• Check tide tables and charts to find the low tide times.
• Check with the National Weather Service to get the latest safety information about coastal storms, wind, waves, temperatures, and rain.
During Digging Clams.
• Look out for warning sign or beach closures when you arrive at the beach.
• Identify your molluscan shellfish because some shellfish can have higher biotoxin levels.
• Fill in your holes after digging clams to help shellfish survive and prevent a tripping hazard for other people on the beach.
• Don’t dig alone. Always have a buddy or go in groups and let others know when and where you are going.
• Always bring a light (headlamp, flashlight, or lantern) when digging at night.
• Be wise about the ocean. Always face the ocean when digging clams and be aware of your surroundings.
• Protect our waterways and shellfish beaches by using public toilets. Scoop, bag, and trash human waste if no toilets are available. Scoop, bag, and trash your pet's waste. Dispose of your trash in garbage cans or pack out your trash.