Shellfish harvesting closed on some Puget Sound beaches

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SEATTLE (AP) _ A number of Puget Sound beaches are now closed to recreational shellfish harvesting due to unsafe levels of marine toxins.

Washington health officials found unsafe levels of the biotoxin that causes diarrhetic shellfish poisoning in samples of shellfish they tested. The condition can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps and chills.

Shellfish harvested commercially are tested for toxins prior to distribution and should be safe to eat.

Beaches in south King County are closed, from Three Tree Point to the Pierce County line. In Kitsap County, beaches are closed to shellfish harvesting from King Spit near Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor south to near the Mason County border.

In Thurston County, the shellfish closure includes Squaxin Passage from Steamboat Island east along Carlyon Beach to Hunter Point, southeast to Cooper Point, and east to Little Fishtrap, including Boston Harbor and Budd Inlet.

Harvesters are urged to make sure a beach is approved for shellfish harvesting before collecting clam, oysters or other shellfish.

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