For three months of the year Bay Scallop Season allows local residents and visitors to harvest these delicacies on the West coast of Florida from Aripeka, Hernando County northwards. In 2015, open harvest season for bay scallops along Florida’s Gulf coast runs from June 27 – September 24.
Its popularity may be the cause of its decline as a natural resource. The 2015 Annual abundance survey from the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission finds the local scallop population ‘vulnerable’ with less than 1 scallop per 12 square yards.
Reasons for the decline can be attributed to environmental events such as hurricanes, major tropical storms and El Niño or a decline in water quality, polution or overfishing.
The daily bag limit is 2 gallons whole bay scallops in shell or 1 pint of bay scallop meat per person (max. 10 gal. of whole bay scallops in shell or 1/2 gal. bay scallop meat per vessel).
For more information: Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission