Red Tide Spurs Shellfishing Ban In North

A red tide bloom along the North Shore forced the state’s marine division this week to ban shellfishing from the New Hampshire border to Gloucester until further notice.

Shellfish — including clams, carnivorous snails, and certain scallops — are unsafe to harvest because of an increase in single-celled, toxic algae that accumulate in shellfish, making them poisonous, even deadly, according to the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, which issued the ban Thursday. Crabs, lobsters, fish, and shrimp are not affected.

The red tide is an increasingly frequent New England occurrence that starts in the Gulf of Maine and is pushed south by easterly or northeasterly winds, said Jeff Kennedy, the state’s North Shore shellfish project leader.

“A lot of times, we may or may not see it up in Massachusetts,’’ he said. “But there’s been a lot of northeast winds in the last week or two, and it’s driving the cells down the coast and inshore.’’

To read the rest of the story, please go to: The Boston Globe