Shellfish closure extended Monday to other areas of Whidbey Island

The closure now includes almost all of the west side of the island due to marine biotoxins.

The marine biotoxin warning that shut down the shellfish harvest on the west side of Whidbey in August has been extended.

As of Monday, the closure extends from Maxwelton in the north to Ala Spit in the east, and still includes all of Deception Pass, according to the state Department of Health.

In August, the closure was located only from Fort Casey to Ala Spit.

Clams, mussels, oysters, geoducks and other shellfish should not be eaten if harvested from the affected waters. Crab is OK so long as it is thoroughly cleaned of its guts (also known as the “butter”) and are thrown away.

Cooking affected shellfish will not rid it of the toxin and can lead to adverse health effects like tingling of the lips and mouth, difficulty breathing, nausea or a sense of floating.

Symptoms can progress to loss of control of limbs, paralysis of the muscles used to breathe, or even death.

A type of phytoplankton is linked to paralytic shellfish poison, and although it is naturally occurring, it can rise to unsafe levels for humans. Affected water can still run clear although the condition is sometimes referred to as “red tide.”

It will be safe to eat shellfish from the affected areas once the advisory is lifted, as clean water will flush out the toxins in time.

The Department of Health’s shellfish closure does not have an end date yet, and seafood lovers should check its website before getting ready to crack a few shells.

More in News

New Langley tent initiative covers restaurants

The island’s realtors sponsored heated tents so Langley restaurants can continue outdoor seating.

Man with criminal history accused of threat, assault

The man is facing charges for threatening a post office employee, and spitting in an officer’s face.

Shop for a cause this weekend in Freeland

All proceeds from the garage sale will be donated.

Recent COVID-19 bump is ‘still very manageable’

Some of the most recent cases have been family clusters.

South Whidbey Schools Foundation says it was stiffed on fundraiser proceeds

The foundation says it raised $7,000 in ticket sales but hasn’t received the money.

Oak Harbor 2020 sales taxes ‘on par’ with previous year

Although some sectors have decreased, remote sellers saw a 40 percent jump in sales taxes this year.

The MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft system flies over Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., during a flight test activity in June. Though the Northrop Grumman aircraft won’t be landing at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Capt. Matt Arny said its mission will be run from the base. Photo by Alan Radecki.
NAS Whidbey ready to support unmanned aircraft

Base commander talks growth, future projects

Mr. South Whidbey postponed, remembrance event in its place

Mr. South Whidbey won’t return to the stage until 2021.

Siding of South Whidbey home scorched by small fire Thursday

The homeowner threw a cigarette butt into a wastebasket. It caught on fire.

Most Read