Catching Scallops In Florida If you are looking to catch scallops in the state of Florida, you are looking towards the state’s west coast. In particular, you are looking at the northwest region of the state, a stretch of beach that covers areas such as Port St. Joe, Cape San Blas, Keaton Beach, Steinhatchee, Crystal River, and Homosassa. The state of Florida regulates scallop harvesting, and it is illegal to harvest scallops outside of a line that stretches from Mexico Beach Canal in Bay County to the Pasco-Hernando County line (the open harvest area). There are also specific regulations in regards to possession and harvesting of scallops. In order to harvest scallops, you must have a Florida saltwater fishing license and a dive flag. There is also a bag limit on harvesting, which is 2 gallons of scallops still in their shell each day. It is also illegal to possess scallops outside of the open harvest area. Florida’s scallop season runs from June 27th to September 24th. Most harvesters anchor their boat and put up their dive flag before putting on their mask and snorkel to look for scallops. Typically, scallops reside in grassy sea beds at a depth of about 4 to 8 feet. Scallops must be caught by hand or with a small dip net. Scallops must be kept at cool temperatures, and should be placed in a live well when you return to your boat. Scallops put on ice are easier to clean and cut open to get the white muscle away from the shell.
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