As a fishing community, Gouldsboro depends on its working waterfront. Intertidal lands are part of that waterfront. Maine adopted its laws governing the intertidal zone from Massachusetts, including a 1647 law that granted everyone permission to use the intertidal zone for “fishing, fowling, and navigation.” Consequently, subject to other laws governing hunting seasons and licenses for fishing and clamming, anyone can use the land between low tide and high tide for hunting, fishing, clam digging, and other forms of “fishing, fowling, and navigation.”
If they can get there.
Most of the land along the shore is in private hands. Not many years ago, private landowners often worked out handshake arrangements that enabled clam harvesters to get to the shore. But property along Gouldsboro’s shore has been changing hands quickly, a trend that has accelerated since the onset of COVID, when more people began working remotely. The Gouldsboro Shore project is working to keep these arrangements in place whenever possible. Here is the latest news on what we have been doing.