Forget the sun, we’re here for the clams

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While foreigners and sun-lovers flocked to Jomtien Beach for HM the King’s birthday July 28 and the weekend, others hungry for something different headed to Kratinglai Beach and other Banglamung shorelines to collect clams.
While foreigners and sun-lovers flocked to Jomtien Beach for HM the King’s birthday July 28 and the weekend, others hungry for something different headed to Kratinglai Beach and other Banglamung shorelines to collect clams.

Some people came for the sun. Others arrived in Pattaya over the long royal birthday weekend for the clams.

While foreigners and sun-lovers flocked to Jomtien Beach for HM the King’s birthday July 28 and the weekend, others hungry for something different headed to Kratinglai Beach and other Banglamung shorelines to collect clams.

The current tides have low tide occurring during the day, making it convenient for people to scoop up shellfish. Many do it for a meal, while others take them to sell.

Thawatchai Prakongkwan, chairman of local fisheries association in Banglamung District, said the scavengers aren’t hurting the fishing industry, as a clam’s lifespan is very short.

In fact, he said, if tourists don’t collect clams, the animals will die and stink up the beach.

Thawatchai recalled that it wasn’t so long ago that Pattaya-area beaches never saw clams. But all that changed after the 2004 tsunami, which washed marine life never seen before in the upper Gulf of Thailand into the area from the Andaman Sea.