Washington Plans to Open a Renewed Miller Bay for Shellfish Harvesting

INDIANOLA – State officials plan to reopen a swath of quiet Miller Bay for shellfish harvesting, a sign of the improved health of the North Kitsap cove.

According to the state’s Department of Health, the harvesting status of 236 of Miller Bay’s 272 acres will be upgraded from “prohibited” to “approved” later this month if the department receives no appeals to the change. The move would leave 36 acres at the head of the bay still closed for harvesting.

The bay was evaluated in the late 1980s to the mid-1990s and was then found to have poor water quality, which led to the ban on harvesting, according to the Department of Health. The Suquamish Tribe made a request to the state in 2015 to harvest at the site, and testing in the bay since then has shown decreased fecal coliform levels and cleaner water thanks to improvements around the bay, health officials said.

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