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Attention Shellfishers and Waterfowlers on the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers!

As a result of improved water quality, portions of the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers were upgraded to "Seasonally Approved" for direct harvest of shellfish in 1997 and 2001. After being closed for approximately 25 years, the harvest is now allowed from November 1 to April 30. This reclassification was the result of cooperative efforts of the DEP, local municipalities and individuals to reduce nonpoint source pollution in the region.

While the seasonal opening of these waters was well received by recreational and commercial shellfishers, the reclassification did result in some unexpected problems. Waterfowl hunters use much of the same area during a portion of the seasonal shellfish harvest period, resulting in conflicts. Shellfishing activity was an obvious problem to waterfowl hunters enjoying their sport on the river, and shellfishermen could not work in areas where hunters were set up.

In an effort to resolve this spatial conflict, Bureau of Shellfisheries staff met with representatives of both user groups to find an equitable resolution to the problem. In the end, both groups agreed that they would respect the rights of others and operate on a "first come-first served" basis.

Whether a waterfowl hunter or shellfishermen, enjoy your outdoor pursuits along the Navesink and Shrewsbury, but keep the "golden rule" in mind at all times.

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Copyright © State of New Jersey, 1996-2008
Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: June 23 2008