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Environment and Outdoors

Environmentalists Propose Mainers Farm Quahogs To Beat Pests

GEORGETOWN, Maine - An environmental group is working with Maine shellfish farmers to grow more of a species of clam it thinks can better stand up to predators that have plagued the state's harvest of bivalves.Seafood lovers have sought Maine's softshell clams for decades, but the state's harvesters are collecting fewer of those clams, in part because of the spread of crabs and worms that prey on them.

Massachusetts-based group Manomet thinks the answer might lie in the aquaculture of quahogs, which are a harder species of clam associated more with Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

The group is working with four shellfish farmers to grow quahogs in Maine and study the results. The federal government's NOAA Sea Grant has taken notice and provided $65,000 to give the project a boost.