2018 Optimizing the Georges Bank Scallop Fishery by Maximizing Meat Yield and Minimizing Bycatch

Project Title: Optimizing the Georges Bank Scallop Fishery by Maximizing Meat Yield and Minimizing Bycatch

Year: 2018

Principle Investigators: Luisa Garcia, Liese Siemann

Client: NOAA/NMFS Atlantic Sea Scallop Research Set-Aside Program

This project will be a continuation of 10 years of surveys in this area by CFF. Fixed stations, chosen based on scallop, yellowtail flounder, and windowpane flounder abundances during previous Coonamessett Farm Foundation (CFF) projects, will be sampled inside Closed Area II (CAII) and adjacent regions to the south and west. Data collected will be used to quantify bycatch rates and scallop shell height-meat weight relationships. Biological measurements and reproductive stages and/or maturity will be collected from scallops, flatfish (including yellowtail and windowpane flounder), and lobsters. Other data collected will include: scallop health and gray meat presence/characterization, presence of parasites (i.e.,  Ichthyophonus sp.) in yellowtail flounder, and the presence of shell disease and dredge-induced damage in lobsters. In collaboration with the Atlantic Offshore Lobstermen’s Association (AOLA) and NH Fish and Game, Lobsters will be tagged to examine distribution, migration and incidental mortality in the scallop industry.