National Seashore Expresses Concern for Hydraulic Clamming

ProvincetownPROVINCETOWN – Cape Cod National Seashore officials are now expressing their concern with the practice of hydraulic clam dredging off the coast of Herring Cove in Provincetown.

Seashore Superintendent George Price says a presentation by a Center for Coastal Studies geologist showed the process could cause erosion problems.

“The activity was also raising the sediment in such a turbulent way that it was very easy for the currents to carry it away from those particular beaches and allow it to drop off the shelf which is not too far away,” said Price.

The process of blasting water into the ocean bottom also could cause issues for the ocean habitat.

“Some of our marine biologists and some of our scientists were very concerned about the technique of the hydro-dredging having a real negative effect on the habitat of the ocean bottom,” said Price.

Price said a letter has been sent to the Division of Marine Fisheries, who allows the practice of hydraulic dredging, expressing their concerns.

“The state officials responsible for permitting this activity actually believe that they have science behind the decision to allow this activity to occur,” he said.

Price added that the method allows a boat to fish the equivalent of up to 10 football fields of ocean floor each day.

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