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Bēhance

Mike Parlante

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  • In Massachusetts, clams cannot legally measure more than an inch wide. In the basket to the left that has iron spokes an inch apart from each other, Mike Parlante, a shellfish harvester, puts the clams that meet state and federal regulations. Then he puts the clams that are not fully grown yet in the black crate, right in Wellfleet Bay, Massachusetts on Oct. 27, 2012.
  • Parlante searches through oysters to look for their greatest predators: drill snails. Drill Snails carry sulfuric acid, which helps the snails drill into the oyster shell. 
  • To prepare for winter, Parlante rakes a square plot in the sand, where he places immature clams.
  • At low tide, Parlante can drive his pickup truck onto the beach directly in front of his seven-acre plot. He uses the bed of his truck and a metal sifter to separate the legal-sized clams from those that are not yet fully mature.
  • Parlante inspects his oysters on what are called “Chinese Hats.” These devices are used to collect oyster seed and larvae, which allow the baby oysters to grow. Then he takes the oysters off of the hats and puts them into the oyster beds to finish their maturation.
  • About 400 fully-grown clams sit in a bucket on the back of Parlante’s truck as he drives off of the beach. Later he packages these clams in netted bags to be sold to various fish markets and restaurants around the Cape.