Cockle Beds Closed

Boats in Penclawdd

Sadly, the cockle beds in the Bury Inlet and the Three Rivers area of Carmarthen Bay have had to be closed today because an outbreak of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) has been detected.

The news was issued by the City & County of Swansea Council in a bulletin this afternoon

They say that it is still OK to walk on the beaches and even to bathe in the water.

However, with a brisk westerly wind blowing up the Loughor Estuary and the rain battering horizontally, probably nobody would chance a swim today!

Here’s hoping the problem will be quickly sorted, though, to allow the local cocklers to get back to their work.

It is to be hoped also, that this time around, the tests are more accurate than those conducted in 2001 when DSP was detected in this area, closing the beds for fourteen months …. and unnecessarily, as the readings were later found to have been unreliable.

2 thoughts on “Cockle Beds Closed

  1. Lesley

    I was talking to a local licenced cockler this week and asked him if he had been able to receive any help during the previous closure of the beds, which lasted for fourteen months.

    He told me that he had had no help at all.

    He was faced with a Hobson’s choice: In order to be able to claim unemployment benefit, he would have had to have surrendered his cockler’s licence. Had he done so, he would have been unable to replace it.

    A licenced cockler is deemed to be ’employed’, even if the beds have been declared ‘closed’ due to DSP, whether the diagnosis is correct or not

  2. Lesley

    The following appeared in the Swansea Council bulletin on 12th May:

    Cockle and mussel beds in the Burry Inlet have reopened after they were temporarily closed after samples proved positive for diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP).
    Council Logo City and County of Swansea Council Logo

    Swansea Council had previously issued a Notice of Temporary Closure of Production Areas at Burry Inlet South and Whitford Point for shellfish gathering.

    The reopening of the beds in Swansea has been confirmed by the Council following negative tests for DSP (diarrhetic shellfish poisoning).

    Kath Johnston, Swansea Council’s Divisional Officer for Food and Safety, said, “We’re pleased that we can now reopen the beds allowing gatherers back on site.

    “We have been asked to sample again next week, so the long term opening of the beds is not guaranteed. ”

    The Three Rivers area in Carmarthenshire remains closed until further notice.


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