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2024 Fishing Year Northern Gulf of Maine Sea Scallop Possession Limit and Total Allowable Landings

March 22, 2024

New measures for Northern Gulf of Maine (NGOM) scallop vessels and a summary of how they may affect fishing plans and activities for the 2024 fishing year. Effective April 1, 2024.

Northern Gulf of Maine 2024 Scallop Management Map

**Effective April 1, 2024** Prohibition on Transiting Scallop Rotational Areas and the Western Gulf of Maine Closure Area

To better enforce the Sea Scallop Rotational Area Management Program, Framework 38 prohibits all vessels fishing under a scallop declaration from entering or transiting any scallop rotational areas, including the Platts Bank Scallop Rotational Closed Area (see below), and the Western Gulf of Maine Closure Area.  

**Effective April 22, 2024** 5-minute Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) reporting on Federal Scallop Trips

Beginning on April 22, 2024, all scallop vessels with active VMS units will be subject to constant reporting at 5-minute intervals when seaward of the VMS demarcation line on a federal scallop declaration. When inshore of the VMS demarcation line, vessels will report at a 30-minute interval. The increased VMS reporting rate will not apply to vessels participating in state-waters scallop fisheries and excludes any scallop trip associated with the Scallop State Water Exemption Program. NOAA Fisheries encourages vessels to contact their VMS provider to determine the best service plan to meet their needs.

**Effective April 1, 2024** Pre-Trip Notification System

Beginning April 1, 2024, scallop vessel owners and operators will be required to notify NOAA Fisheries of their intent to fish using the Pre-Trip Notification System (PTNS) instead of the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system. Notifications for an April 1st sail date must be entered through PTNS, up to 10 days in advance.

The new process will allow vessels to enter their own notifications online using the PTNS website. Vessels will log into the PTNS website with their individual Fish Online username and password. This will be the primary means of trip notification and trip changes. Vessels can submit a notification anytime between 10 days and 48 hours before the intended trip, a decrease in the current 72-hour notification requirement. 

Scallop permit holders are encouraged to visit the Scallop PTNS webpage for more details.


Northern Gulf of Maine Management for Fishing Year 2024

Framework Adjustment 38 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan implements total allowable landings (TAL) in the Northern Gulf of Maine (NGOM) of 454,152 lb for fishing year 2024. This action deducts 25,000 lb of scallops from the NGOM TAL to increase the overall Scallop Research Set-Aside (RSA) that funds scallop research. In addition, this action deducts one percent of the NGOM Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) from the NGOM TAL to support the Industry-Funded Scallop (IFS) Observer Program to help defray the cost to scallop vessels that carry an observer.

NGOM Scallop Fishery Landing Limits for Fishing Year 2024


NGOM TAL454,152 lb
1 percent NGOM ABC for Observers8,554 lb
RSA Contribution25,000 lb
NGOM Set-Aside420,598 lb
NGOM Annual Projected Landings (APL)(*)

* NGOM APL is set when the NGOM Set-Aside is above 800,000 lb .

**NEW** Platts Bank Scallop Rotational Closed Area

Framework 38 closes the Platts Bank Scallop Rotational Closed Area through fishing year 2025. This closure protects a substantial number of small scallops that have not been recruited into the fishery. 

Platts Bank Scallop Rotational Closed Area

PointN latitudeW longitude
PB143° 13.8’69° 43.8’
PB243° 13.8’69° 31.2’
PB343° 5.4’69° 31.2’
PB443° 5.4’69° 43.8’
PB143° 13.8’69° 43.8’


In-shell (Shell Stock) Possession Limits

  • The in-shell (shell stock) possession limit of scallops is a weight conversion (8.33 lb of in-shell scallops = 1 lb of scallop meats).
  • Vessels issued an LAGC NGOM scallop permit and IFQ vessels fishing in the NGOM may possess no more than 1,666 lb in-shell scallops shoreward of the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) demarcation line.

Observer Program Updates:

Set-Aside Compensation

If NOAA Fisheries selects your vessel for an observed trip, and you are issued an observer, you will receive an observer compensation credit of 125-lb per trip if the observer set-aside has not been fully harvested. You can only fish those additional pounds on the observed trip above the regular possession limit of 200 lb/trip (i.e., 325 lb/trip total).

We monitor the compensation rates and observer set-aside use closely throughout the year. If a different rate is necessary to account for unexpected fishery conditions, we will change the compensation rate as appropriate and necessary. 

Important LAGC Program Reminders

Possession limit

The possession limit to vessels on a NGOM trip, unless otherwise increased due to observer coverage as noted above, is 200 lb/trip  (1,666 lb shell stock/trip)

IFQ Requirement for IFQ Vessels

For IFQ vessels, all scallop harvest counts against your IFQ, regardless of where it is caught, including state waters and the NGOM.

LAGC Calendar Day Landing Restriction

LAGC IFQ and NGOM vessels may not land scallops more than once per calendar day. For example, an LAGC vessel that lands scallops on Monday may depart on a second trip on the same day it landed scallops (Monday), but cannot land scallops again until Tuesday.

Scallop Pre-Landing Notification

LAGC IFQ and NGOM vessels must send a VMS Scallop Pre-Landing Notification form at least 6 hours before arrival on the way back to port, or immediately after fishing ends if less than 6 hours before arrival. In addition, you must submit this form on trips that are not declared as scallop trips, but on which scallops are kept incidentally.  

Forms must include the:

  • Operator’s permit number;
  • Vessel trip report (VTR) serial number recorded from that trip's VTR;
  • Estimated amount of scallop meats and/or bushels to be landed;
  • Estimated time and date of arrival in port;
  • Port city and state at which the scallops will be landed; and
  • Whether any scallops were caught in the NGOM.

Protected Species Reminders

Commercial Fishing Reporting of Protected Species Takes

Protected Species Handling and Resuscitation Requirements and Guidelines

Last updated by Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office on March 22, 2024