Clam, Atlantic Surf (Hokkigai) – U.S.
Atlantic Surf Clams are filter feeding bivalves, found from Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canada to North Carolina. Regulations have prevented overfishing and promoted abundance, however biomass estimates have continually dropped since 1997. Atlantic Surf Clams reproduce at about two years of age. They can be long-lived (~ 40 years maximum).
The Surf Clam fishery is a very ‘clean’ fishery with limited bycatch and having virtually no impact on protected species. However, the hydraulic clam dredge used to catch Surf Clams causes significant damage to sandy bottom habitat.