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 Department of Environmental Management Division of Marine Fisheries (402-423-1923). 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.
Non-residents over age 12 must have a shellfishing license. This annual license is $200 and it is active from March 1 to February 28. Non-residents also may buy a 14-day tourist license for $11. For information on sizes and catch limits call RIDEM Division of Fish and Wildlife at 401-423-1920. For information on pollution and closures, call RIDEM Division of Water Resources at 401-222-3961.