OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- Washington state health officials say the last of about 1,000 acres of commercial shellfish tidelands near the mouth of the Nisqually River should be approved for harvesting clams, oysters and geoducks by the end of the month.

The Olympian newspaper reports that in 1992, Health Department officials ruled the area off-limits to harvest after rainstorms because of unsafe bacterial contamination. About 900 acres were approved for harvest in 2002 after residents worked to reduce livestock waste in the Nisqually Valley and repair faulty septic systems.

The state says the last 37 acres to recover should be approved for unrestricted use by late October, when a Health Department interim order becomes final.

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Information from: The Olympian, http://www.theolympian.com

Copyright 2009 The AP.

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