Parker-Ipswich-Essex Rivers Restoration Partnership
Clammers In The Ipswich River Estuary. Photo: J. Schneider

Ipswich River Re-opens to Shellfishing

In December of 2015, the state Division of Marine Fisheries provided a holiday gift to local shellfishermen and their families by re-opening the river to shellfishing earlier than usual. The river, which is usually only opened for the winter was opened earlier than usual this year due to improving water quality conditions due in part by the hard work of the town of Ipswich as well as Ipswich River Watershed Association staff and volunteers to identify potential pollution sources. More than 50 commercial shellfisherman descended on the river on opening day December 14 with the primary target being razor clams, which have increased in demand significantly in recent years. The Ipswich River estuary includes one-third of all the shellfishing area in the town of Ipswich and the harvest provides more than $1 million to the local economy each year.