Commercial scallop regulations

Notice: Alden Bank Scallop Area 1 is closed. Harvest may only occur in areas that are open by WDFW and Washington Department of Health.

The commercial dive fishery for pink and spiny scallops (Chlamys rubida and Chlamys hastata, respectively) was restarted in 2016. The previous dive fishery took place from 1987-1998. Nearly all of the harvest is currently taken from the San Juan Islands area. Scallops in this fishery are monitored for Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning by the Washington Department of Health, and there are strict requirements for scallops coming out of areas classified as restricted.

Regulations

Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-340-610, effective immediately until further notice, it is unlawful to take or possess pink or spiny scallops taken for commercial purposes except as provided for in this section:

(1) It is unlawful to fish for, take, or possess pink or spiny scallops with shellfish dive gear without a commercial scallop dive fishery license holder on board the designated harvest vessel.

(2) Pink or spiny scallop harvest using shellfish diver gear is only allowed in Washington Department of Health (DOH) Approved Commercial Shellfish Growing Areas of Marine Fish/Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A, 22B, 23A, 23B, 25A and 25B, except as noted in (3) below.

(3) Pink or spiny scallop harvest using shellfish diver gear is also allowed within DOH Restricted Scallop Area 2 Rosario Strait and Restricted Scallop Area 3 Burrows Bay defined by the Washington Department of Health in Marine Fish/Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20B, 21A, and 22A. 

(4) It is unlawful for more than two divers from a harvest vessel to be in the water at any one time during pink or spiny scallop harvest operations or when commercial quantities of pink or spiny scallops are on board the vessel.

(5) It is unlawful to possess any other species of commercial shellfish during pink or spiny scallop harvest operations and when pink or spiny scallops are onboard the harvest vessel.

Harvest quota and landings

Non-Indian scallop quota shares and preliminary landings for the 2018-19 season:

Preliminary landings (pounds) Remaining quota (pounds)
4,524

5,476

last update 8/14/19 

Department of Health information

After WDFW indicates an area is open, commercial harvesters must also check the commercial shellfish growing area’s classification on the Department of Health website. Harvest is allowed in commercial shellfish growing areas classified as Approved. Harvest may occur in areas classified as Conditionally Approved or Restricted only if additional steps with DOH are taken.

Current DOH classifications can be found by using the Commercial Shellfish Map Viewer online. Please contact DOH for questions about classifications and specifics regarding their regulations.