NEW: At its February meeting in Tallahassee, the FWC approved regionally-specific bay scallop open season dates for 2018 ONLY. See below for season dates and regions. View the Commission presentation Adobe PDF.

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Bay Scallop: Argopecten irradians

Florida Recreational Regulations

Harvest areas 

(see map below for details on harvesting areas)
Gulf County, including St. Joseph Bay  Franklin County through northwestern Taylor County AND Levy, Citrus and Hernando counties 

The remaining portion of Taylor County and all of Dixie County

Pasco County

Open Season

Aug. 17-Sept. 30, 2018

July 1 - Sept. 24, 2018 the third Saturday in June (June 16, 2018) through Sept. 10, 2018  July 20-29, 2018
Daily Bag Limit

2 gallons whole bay scallops in shell, or 1 pint of bay scallop meat per person

Maximum of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell, or 1/2 gallon bay scallop meat per vessel

Minimum Size Limit  None 

 

Bay Scallop Harvest Zones:

 Bay scallops may only be harvested in state waters from the following zones:

  • Franklin County through northwestern Taylor County (including Carrabelle, Lanark and St. Marks): July 1 through Sept. 24. This region includes all state waters from the westernmost point of St. Vincent Island in Franklin County to Rock Island near the mouth of the Fenholloway River in Taylor County.
  • The remaining portion of Taylor County and all of Dixie County (including Keaton Beach and the Steinhatchee area): the third Saturday in June (June 16) through Sept. 10. This region includes all state waters east of Rock Island near the mouth of the Fenholloway River in Taylor County and north of Alligator Pass daybeacon #4 near the mouth of the Suwannee River in Levy County.
  • Levy, Citrus and Hernando counties (including Cedar Key, Crystal River and Homosassa): July 1 through Sept. 24. This region includes all state waters south of Alligator Pass daybeacon #4 near the mouth of the Suwannee River in Levy County and north of the Hernando – Pasco county line.
  • St. Joseph Bay and Gulf CountyAug. 17 through Sept. 30. This region includes all state waters from the Mexico Beach Canal in Bay County to the westernmost point of St. Vincent Island in Franklin County.
  • Pasco CountyJuly 20-29. This region includes all state waters south of the Hernando – Pasco county line and north of the Anclote Key Lighthouse in northern Pinellas County, and includes all waters of the Anclote River.

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It is illegal to possess bay scallops on waters outside open harvest areas or during the closed season. It is also illegal to land scallops outside open harvest areas. For example, it would be legal to take scallops from waters off the Hernando County coast, but it would be illegal to dock your boat in Pasco County with the scallop catch onboard. It would also be illegal to transport scallops harvested in zone 2 across zone 3 waters prior to the July 1 zone 3 season opening.Scallop

Gear Requirements:

  • Legal Gear: Harvest permitted only by hand or by using a landing or dip net

Commercial harvest prohibited.

Recreational harvesters need a Florida saltwater fishing license to harvest bay scallops unless they are 1. exempt from needing a license or 2. have a no-cost shoreline fishing license and are wading from shore to collect scallops (i.e. feet do not leave bottom to swim, snorkel, or SCUBA and harvesters do not use a vessel to reach or return from the harvest location).  

Links to more Bay Scallop information:



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