According to the State Department of Environmental Conservation, shellfish harvesting is prohibited until further notice in Mattituck Inlet and Mattituck Creek, a result of toxins found in shellfish collected at the site recently.
The closure, effective April 3, impacts about 92 acres in the area. Officials with the DEC determined that shellfish samples collected in the area tested positive for saxitoxin, which causes paralytic shellfish poisoning.
According to a DEC statement, this was the first time Mattituck Creek and Mattituck Inlet have been closed as a result of biotoxins found in shellfish since testing started in 2006. Officials said the April closure marked the earliest biotoxin closure by more than a month; closures normally occur in mid-May.
The DEC monitors 18 other locations on Long Island, and said it will re-open the area as soon as possible based on the results of laboratory analyses of shellfish and water samples that will be collected over the next few weeks.
A recorded message advising interested parties of the status of temporarily closed shellfish areas can be heard by calling 631-444-0480.