DNR temporarily closes shellfish harvest due to potential hurricane-associated rainfall and surge
BRUNSWICK, Georgia – The recreational and commercial harvest of shellfish in Georgia’s marine waters will close by administrative order at 6 a.m. Saturday, October 1, 2022, until after the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) determines safe harvesting can restart.
DNR Commissioner Mark Williams today signed an administrative order closing the harvest due to expected rainfall and tidal surge associated with Hurricane Ian. This temporary closure is precautionary and made in the interest of protecting public health. DNR will notify the public of re-opening via email and its website at www.CoastalGaDNR.org and if warranted after department staff conduct water quality tests and ensure bacterial thresholds are safe for human consumption.
Predicted impacts from Hurricane Ian include heavy rains and larger than normal tidal surges that may result in elevated bacterial levels from run off into shellfish harvest areas. This runoff and surge can cause bacterial contamination of shellfish beds. This closure includes oysters, clams and any other bivalve molluscan shellfish from all Georgia waters.
This temporary closure is being made in accordance with current sound principles of wildlife research and management, and to fulfill the requirements of the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference and the federal Food and Drug Administration.
Anyone with questions may contact DNR’s Shellfish and Water Quality Program Manager Dominic Guadagnoli at 912-617-1741.