DEC Extends Long Island Shellfishing Closures


86503The DEC Bureau of Marine Resources will extend the temporary shellfish closures that became effective at sunrise on Monday, October 29, 2012 . Closures will now continue through Tuesday, November 13, 2012.

Water quality data collected by DEC over the years, after rain/runoff related closures, shows that water quality in the enclosed creeks, coves, harbors and bays around Long Island is adversely affected by stormwater runoff from rain in excess of 3 inches. Coastal flooding caused by strong winds and astronomical high tide (full moon October 29), along with power outages that may affect sewage treatment facilities, can all contribute additional contamination to certified harvesting areas increasing the potential for shellfish to become hazardous for human consumption and making such closures a prudent public health measure.

This closure covers more area than routine emergency rainfall closures and will include all of Great South Bay in Islip and Brookhaven, including all of Patchogue Bay as well as all the creeks, coves, harbors and bays within the Towns of Riverhead, Southampton, East Hampton, Shelter Island and Southold; AND, Flanders Bay, Great Peconic Bay, Little Peconic Bay, Southold Bay, Orient Harbor, Shelter Island Sound, Noyac Bay, Northwest Harbor, Napeague Harbor, Napeague Bay, Montauk Harbor; Hay Harbor, West Harbor and East Harbor on Fishers Island; AND, all of Hempstead Harbor lying southerly of a line extending northeasterly from Prospect Point to Matinecock Point; AND, all of Cold Spring Harbor and all of Huntington Bay.

Although the bay scallop season opens in New York State waters on Monday, November 5, the harvest of bay scallops is also prohibited in the areas affected by the emergency closures described above.