What is the economic value of shellfish landings within the town of Wellfleet? What are the trends in for quahog wholesale prices, weights, and value? This is the first part of a three-part series on Wellfleet’s shellfish catch. This is a quick examination of Wellfleet’s quahog harvest, the next part will be on oysters. Oysters and quohogs represent the two main shellfish species caught or grown in Wellfleet, the third part will be a comparison of the two.
Shellfishing is an important economic and cultural activity on Cape Cod and the town of Wellfleet in particular. In Wellfleet, shellfishing makes up a sizable portion of the year-round economy and employment.
A quick note: These charts are all based on the statisticians published by the Wellfleet Shellfish Department. As per the Shellfish Department, data from before 2015 might not accurately reflect the split between wild harvest and aquaculture. The department heavily quality controlled from 2015 onwards. Prior to 2015, it appears that a fairly sizable portion of cultured quahogs were included in the wild harvest. That said, it looks like the quality control introduced a data inconsistency in the prices for the 2015 year. This pricing inconsistency for 2015 is seen elsewhere as well.