After being closed for six years, the Tasmanian scallop fishery will reopen for commercial harvesting next month following the analysis of stock surveys in June and July this year.
Having been closed since 2015 due to low stock numbers, the decision to reopen the Tasmanian scallop fishery was made succeeding a research plan developed by the Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS).
The IMAS analysis of the survey results gave an indication of scallop abundance, catch rates and size and the results in the vicinity of Babel Island, east of Flinders Island met the acceptable sustainability criteria for opening.
The Scallop Fishery Advisory Committee – which comprises representatives of fishers, processors, IMAS and the Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment (DPIPWE) – has advised that the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) for the fishery has been set at 1494.9 tonnes, or 145 kg/unit.
The season will open in an area east of Flinders Island from Wednesday 1 September to Friday 31 December 2021.
The recreational scallop season opens from the Saturday before Easter until the end of July. The recreational scallop season has been productive in the past few years. Good scallop catches have been reported from the Coles Bay/Freycinet Area, Frederick Bay/Norfolk Bay areas and the outside of Bruny Island.
The Tasmanian scallop fishery is an important part of Australia’s seafood industry and operates under a fishery management plan supported by strict fisheries rules.
As a proud island and fishing state, the Tasmanian government aims to protect and promote Tasmanian seafood heritage through sustainable fisheries management. The state government hopes to create opportunities in its waters for current and future generations.
To access further information about the reopening of the Tasmanian scallop fishery, visit www.dpipwe.tas.gov.au/scallop-season.