Procedure

Four volunteers walk over rockweed carrying nets, buckets, and stakes.
Mike Pinkham, Ada Fisher, Noah Milsky, and Vicki Rea head out to the mud carrying materials for reseeding the flats.
  1. Collect your mud-ready clams and place them in regular 5-gallon buckets (no more than 5,000 clams per bucket)
  2. Gather other materials 
    1. 14ft x 14ft netting 
    2. Garden rake
    3. Stakes (4 stakes per netting)
    4. Mallet or a rock
  3. Drive the clams and the other materials to a mud flat location
    1. Try different locations to determine which flat gives the clams the best survival rate
    2. You should time your arrival with the tide. The optimal time to plant clams is on an incoming tide. Water should cover the clams within the hour that you plant them
  4. Carry the clams and materials to the mud flat
  5. Find a spot on the mud flat without sticks, large rocks, or other debris
    1. It’s best to plant them at the mid tide mark. The closer to shore you plant them, the slower the growth, but the greater the survival rate. Therefore, a middle ground is nice, but feel free to experiment with how far off shore you plant your clams
    2. It’s best to plant in early summer/late spring
  6. if needed, use the garden rake to rake off the first inch of mud where you will place the netting. If any green crabs appear, kill them.
  1. Spread and stretch out the netting over the mud
  2. Walk around the perimeter of the netting so you have an idea of where to sow your clams
  3. Pull back the netting so that you can plant the clams in the marked area where the netting will be placed
  4. Grab a handful of clams from the 5-gallon bucket
  5. Carefully, as you walk around the perimeter of your marked area, sprinkle the clams over the mud inside the marked area. 
    1. Make sure the clams are spread out as you sprinkle them over the mud
    2. Make sure the clams are evenly distributed throughout the entire marked area 
      1. you might have to throw some clams (like you’re tossing a frisbee) to reach the central part of the marked area
    3. We planted around 2,500 clams under each net
      1. Feel free to experiment with more or less clams than that and see what amount provides the best survival rate
  6. Once the clams are spread out, cover the clams with the netting
    1. Make sure the netting is fully stretched out and is covering all clams
  7. Put a stake through the rope loops which appear at the corners of each netting.
  8. While stretching the corner, use a rock or mallet to stake in the corner of the netting into the mud.
  9. Do step 13 and 14 for all corners
  10. Once the netting is staked in, Step on top of the outer edge of the netting, pushing the edges into the mud. 
  11. When the entire inside perimeter of the netting is pushed into the mud, fill in your footprints with mud (furthering covering/burying the edges of the netting with mud)
  12. Wrap an official tag around the netting so that no clam harvesters remove the nettings
  13. On the next low tide, come back to the same location to make sure your clams have settled into the mud.

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