Shellfishing & Clamming - RI Statewide

Easy, Fun, and a Tasty Adventure for Kids & Families

The popular shellfish of Rhode Island (and subject of many jokes) is the quahog (also: quohog or quahaug) - the shellfish used by Natives to make wampum. Outside Rhode Island, quahogs are usually called hard-shell clams and people often say they are going clamming or clam digging.

In Rhode Island, shellfishing licenses are issued by the state Dept. of Environmental Management (DEM) Division of Marine Fisheries. People must apply by mail, using application forms on the DEM website. No license for recreational shellfishing is required for RI residents. Know the local rules on catch limits, size limits, and allowable tools to use.

Clamming and Shellfishing in Rhode Island - Photo Credit Shutterstock
Mosquito Beach Shellfishing & Clamming

west of Corn Neck Road Town of New Shoreham (Block Island), RI Phone:

On the southeast shore of the Great Salt Pond, this fishing location is west of Corn Neck Road. It has a salt marsh and beach. Shellfishing is a traditional use of this site by local people. There is room for parking about 10 cars at the boardwalk.
Bristol Shellfishing & Clamming

End of Fales Road Bristol, RI Phone:

An extension of the west end of Fales Road, off Hope Street (Route 114), this right-of-way is a concrete ramp leading down to a cobble beach on Narragansett Bay. It is popular for shellfishing
Shellfishing - Block Island Ferry - Narragansett, RI - Photo Credit M. Claeson
Block Island Ferry

304 Great Island Road Narragansett, RI, 02882 Phone: 401-783-7996 Toll-Free: 866-783-7996

In the mood for chowder? Take the ferry over to Block Island and go clamming for quahogs

Experienced clammers and those new to the activity will find plenty of places to dig for quahogs, Rhode Island’s state shellfish, on Block Island. Take the Block Island Ferry over from Narragansett [Point Judith] or Newport, RI and get hunting! Check for permit requirements, rules and regulations on state and island websites before heading out. You’ll want a clam rake, clam-sizing gauge and peck-sized clam buckets (or a garden rake, ruler and small bucket will do). Look for depressions in the sand (or squirting!) – that’s often a quahog clue. The best time to go clamming is just before low tide, when the shellfish are just below the sand surface. Clamming is allowed between sunrise and sunset. And all your bounty must be for personal use — they’re especially great in chowders, or as “stuffies.”
Fisherman’s Memorial State Park Shellfishing & Clamming

1011 Point Judith Road (Route 108) Narragansett, RI Phone: 401-789-8374

Fisherman’s Memorial State Park has a campground, game fields, tennis courts, spectacular views of Point Judith Pond, Narragansett Bay, and Block Island Sound. From the park’s northwest corner, a pathway leads to a state shellfish management area. Parking is available.
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Quonochontaug Breachway Shellfishing & Clamming

End of West Beach Road Charlestown, RI Phone:

This state-owned parcel is parallel to the east side of the Quonochontaug Breachway. Parking is available at the end of West Beach Road for cars and boat trailers. Boating here is very dangerous due to swift currents running through the breachway. This site includes a RIDEM shellfish management area.
Block Island / New Shoreham Shellfishing & Clamming

A shellfishing license from the Town of New Shoreham is required for anyone age 14 and older to take any shellfish from the Great Salt Pond. Licenses are issued for New Shoreham taxpayers and for summer visitors. Any person may obtain a seasonal license valid from May 16 through October 15. This license is offered on a weekly, monthly and seasonal basis. Shellfish taken under this license cannot be offered for sale or trade. Any person 65 years of age or older may obtain a golden shellfish license for $1. Email: harbors@new-shoreham.com
Dunns Bridge

on Beach Avenue near Corn Neck Road New Shoreham (Block Island), RI Phone:

The bridge over the Harbor Pond Channel, this site has traditionally provided public access for fishing, scenic enjoyment, and shellfishing. No parking is available.
Potters Cove/ Taylor Point

Taylor Point Jamestown, RI Phone:

A long narrow beach hugging Potter Cove can be reached by stairs descending from the parking lot. Clamming and fishing are popular activities here.
Ocean Avenue Bridge

Trims Pond New Shoreham (Block Island), RI, 02807 Phone:

This site is used often by the public for shellfishing, fishing, kayak launching and walking. A town shellfishing permit is required (see above). Area closed to shellfishing from May to October.
Seapowet Marsh and Point Fishing Area

Off Seapowet Avenue Tiverton, RI Phone:

Located off Seapowet Avenue, this refuge area includes a variety of coastal habitats.There is a parking area along a cobble beach north of the bridge over the Seapowet River and walking or driving access to Seapowet Point. There is a marsh on the point, popular for shellfishing. There is also a small gravel boat launch ramp south of the bridge that provides access to an extensive salt marsh and tidal creek area. go to link and scroll down to "Seapowet Marsh and Point Fishing Area."
Bluff Hill Cove on Point Judith Salt Pond Shellfishing

North of Galilee Escape Road Narragansett, RI, 02882 Phone:

Point Judith Salt Pond -- and in particular the East Pond tidal flats -- supports a commercial and very large recreational shellfishery for clams, quahogs, as well as oysters and scallops in season. The north-south pond extends from the urban center of Wakefield at the head of the pond to the port of Galilee at the mouth of the pond.
Access from Galilee: Follow signs on Route 108 South to the Block Island Ferry. Park along Galilee Escape Road, the main road leading into the village. Walk down to the watery mud flats that have been exposed by low tide. Usually this area will have several groups of diggers.