Softshell clams from 5 sites from the mainstem of the Parker River , Plum Island sound estuary and adjacent tidal creeks were measured for length, wet weight, dry weight and organic content in 2010.
Five sampling sites were selected along the flanks of the lower 14 km of the estuary where clams were found Approximately 7-22 clams were dug at each site and taken back to the lab, where they were measured with calipers to determine their shell length (in millimeters) and wet weight (clam plus shell, grams). The clams were then dried in a drying oven (at 60 degrees Celcius for 24hours at a time) until their weight no longer changed to determine their dry weight (clam plus shell, grams). Several clams were selected to determine their organic content - these clams (and their shells) were ashed in a muffle furnace (at 500 degrees Celcius for 5-6 hours), and the difference between their final ashed weight and dry weight reflects the organic content of the clams.
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