Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, March 24, 2016
Emergency closure announced for scallop fishery
Targeted closures of scallop fishing grounds were announced by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on March 20 due to “depleted stock,” according to closure notices posted by the department.
The closures are “imposed as a conservation measure to assist in rebuilding specific areas of the state.”
Twenty-seven areas, including the local areas of Upper Blue Hill Bay/Union River, Eggemoggin Reach and Lower Jericho Bay were identified for closure “based on direct input from Marine Patrol and independent industry participants as well as observations made through the Department’s monitoring programs, the level of fishing effort in these areas during the fishing season has likely exceeded the 30-percent removal target that ensures the fishery continues to rebuild. Continued fishing threatens remaining broodstock scallops that are needed for successful spawning to rebuild the resource in these areas as well as sublegal product that will recruit up to the fishery for harvest in future years,” according to the DMR notice.