Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery: Limited Access Scallop Vessels Updated Allocations for the 2020 Fishing Year and Other New Measures

March 30, 2020

New measures for Limited Access vessels implemented through Framework Adjustment 32 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan and a summary of how they may affect fishing plans and activities for the 2020 fishing year. Effective April 1, 2020.

The following information describes new measures implemented through Framework Adjustment 32 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan and a summary of how they may affect your fishing plans and activities for the 2020 fishing year.  We have also included reminders of some current requirements.

Scallop_Wall_Map_Color_2020615.jpg

 

Updated 2020 Days-At-Sea (DAS) Allocations

Scallop Open Area DAS Allocations

Permit Category

2020 DAS

Full-Time

24.0

Part-Time

9.6

 

2020 Access Area Closures

The following areas are closed for scallop fishing year 2020 (see map above and coordinates below):

  • Closed Area II-Southwest and Extension
  • Nantucket Lightship-Triangle

Areas Reverting to Open Area

  • Nantucket Lightship-Hatchet
  • Nantucket Lightship-West
    • This area will revert to the open area on May 31, 2020, to allow for 2019 carryover trips to occur.

Fishing Year 2020 Access Area Allocations

Framework 32 allocates effort into five rotational access areas (Mid-Atlantic Access Area (MAAA), Nantucket Lightship-North Access Area (NLS-N), Nantucket Lightship-South-Deep Access Area (NLS-S-D), Closed Area I Access Area (CAI), and Closed Area II Access Area (CAII)).

Full-time Access Area Allocations:  The table below provides the limited access full-time allocations for all of the access areas, which can be taken in as many trips as needed, so long as you do not exceed the possession limit on each trip.

Access Area Full-Time Limited Access Vessel Allocations and Trip Possession Limits

Rotational Access Area

2020 Scallop Allocation

Scallop Possession Limit

Closed Area I Flex1

9,000 lb

18,000 lb per trip

Closed Area II2

18,000 lb

Nantucket Lightship-North

9,000 lb

Nantucket Lightship-South-Deep

18,000 lb

Mid-Atlantic

36,000 lb

      Total

90,000 lb

 

1CAI flex allocation can be landed from either CAI or the MAAA.

2CAII is closed from August 15, 2020 – November 30, 2020.

Extension of CAII Seasonal Closure to Mitigate Flatfish Bycatch:  For fishing year 2020, the existing seasonal closure in CAII will be extended an additional 15 days to reduce bycatch of northern windowpane flounder and Georges Bank yellowtail flounder. 

**CAII will be closed from August 15 - November 30 for the 2020 fishing year.**

Changes to the Full-Time Limited Access One-for-One Access Area Allocation Exchanges:  Framework 32 allocates each full-time limited access vessel 9,000 lb of allocation to both CAI and NLS-N.  To accommodate one-for-one access area allocation changes among all available access areas, this action allows full-time limited access vessels to exchange access area allocation in 9,000-lb increments.  For example, a full-time vessel may exchange 9,000 lb from one access area for 9,000 lb allocated to another full-time vessel for another access area.  Further, a full-time vessel may exchange 18,000 lb from one access area for 18,000 lb allocated to another full-time vessel for another access area.  One-for-one access area allocations for part-time limited access vessels remain unchanged and must occur in the increments of a possession limit, i.e., 12,000 lb.

Changes to the Crew Restrictions for Trips in NLS-S-D:  The scallops in the NLS-S-D are expected to have lower yield than similar sized scallops in other areas.  Because these scallops are smaller than those normally harvested in the area rotation program, for fishing year 2020, vessels are allowed two additional crew members aboard both limited access full-time (10 in total) and limited access full-time small dredge vessels (8 in total).

CAI Flex Allocation:  For the 2020 fishing year and the first 60 days of the 2021 fishing year, full-time limited access vessels may choose to land CAI flex allocation from either CAI or the MAAA.  However, vessels may only fish in a single access area on a given trip.

For example, a vessel could take a trip in CAI and land 5,000 lb from that area, leaving the vessel with 4,000 lb of the CAI flex allocation available, which could be landed from the MAAA, provided the 18,000-lb possession limit is not exceeded on any one trip.  Framework 32 does not allocate any flex allocation to part-time limited access vessels.

Part-time Access Area Allocations:  The table below provides the limited access part-time allocations for two of the access areas, which can be taken in as many trips as needed, so long as you do not exceed the possession limit on each trip

Access Area Part-Time Limited Access Vessel Allocations and Trip Possession Limits

Rotational Access Area

Scallop Possession Limit

2020 Scallop Allocation

Closed Area II

12,000 lb

12,000 lb

Mid-Atlantic

24,000 lb

Total

 

36,000 lb

 

Access Area Carryover

Beginning April 1, 2020, and through the first 60 days of the fishing year, limited access vessels may fish their remaining unharvested 2019 access area scallop allocation (i.e., CA1 Flex, NLS-W (carryover only), or MAAA).  These trips must begin no later than May 30, 2020.  After that date, any unused 2019 access area allocation expires.  Full-time and part-time vessels are subject to the fishing 2020 possession limits (i.e., 18,000 lb for full-time and 12,000 lb for part-time) on all access area trips.  A vessel can combine carryover trips and 2020 trips provided there is 2020 allocation available in that area and it does not exceed the possession limit on any one trip.

For example, if a full-time vessel has 2,000 lb of 2019 MAAA allocation remaining and it makes a MAAA trip for 18,000 lb.  The first 2,000 lb would come off of the 2019 MAAA allocation, and the remaining 16,000 lb would come off of the 2020 MAAA allocation.

Important Access Area Program Reminders

Crew Limits:  Limited access vessels are restricted to eight individuals (10 individuals in NLS-S-D), including the captain.  Limited access vessels fishing in the small dredge program are limited to six individuals (8 individuals in NLS-S-D), including the captain.  Crew limits for vessels on open area DAS trips remain at seven individuals for both full-time and part-time vessels and five individuals for small dredge vessels.

Reporting Requirements for All Scallop Trips You need to submit a scallop pre-landing notification form through your Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) unit prior to returning to port at the end of each access area and DAS trip, including trips where no scallops are landed (more details in the Reminders section below).

Access Area Allocation Monitoring:  Although vessel owners are ultimately responsible for tracking their own scallop access area landings and ensuring they do not exceed their annual allocations, NMFS will compile dealer-reported scallop landing records with access area trip declarations.  The information will be available on the web-based allocation monitoring tool, Fish Online, which each vessel owner can access and review.  

Observer Program Updates:

Set-Aside Compensation

The access area compensation credit for limited access vessels is 250 pounds per day, in addition to the vessel’s possession limit for each day or part of a day an observer is on board.  The observer compensation credit can be harvested on a subsequent trip; however, you must remain within the trip’s possession limit when an observer is not onboard.  The open area compensation rate for limited access vessels fishing under DAS is 0.12 DAS per DAS fished (the vessel is charged 0.88 DAS for each DAS fished with an observer onboard).  We monitor the compensation rates and the observer set-aside use closely throughout the year.  If information suggests that a different rate is necessary to account for unexpected fishery conditions, we will change the compensation rate as appropriate and necessary. 

Call In and Survival Craft Requirements

Please read the following letters regarding important information and updates.

Survival Craft Requirements Regarding Capacity

Industry Funded Scallop Program Call In Requirements

Industry Funded Scallop Call In Guide

Fishing Year 2020 Flatfish ACLs in the Scallop Fishery Proposed in Framework 59 to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan:

Stock

Scallop sub-ACL

Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder

41,888 lb

SNE/MA Yellowtail Flounder

4,409 lb

Northern Windowpane Flounder

26,455 lb

Southern Windowpane Flounder

315,261 lb

 

Other Reminders

Shell Stock Restrictions:

  • Vessels may not possess more than 50 bu of in-shell scallops shoreward of the VMS demarcation line, unless fishing under the state waters exemption program.
  • A vessel declared into the Sea Scallop Access Area Program may not possess more than 50 bu of in-shell scallops outside of the access area.
  • Vessels fishing in the Georges Bank paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) closure area may not retain in-shell scallops.

Scallop Pre-Landing Notification: You must send a VMS Scallop Pre-Landing Notification form on scallop trip at least 6 hours before arrival on the way back to port, or immediately after fishing ends if less than 6 hours before arrival.  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; and
  • Port city and state at which the scallops will be landed.

Daily Scallop Catch Reports: Scallop catch reports are required to be submitted daily for vessels that fish for, possess, or retain scallops and not also fishing under a Northeast multispecies DAS or sector allocation.  These reports must be submitted in 24-hour intervals for each day of fishing that begins at 0000 hours and ends at 2400 hours.  The reports must be submitted before 9:00 a.m. local time each day for the previous day’s catch.  Each report must include the:

  • Operator’s permit number;
  • VTR serial number;
  • Date fish were caught;
  • Total pounds of scallop meets kept; and
  • Total pounds of all other fish kept.

Groundfish Possession Limits on Access Area Trips: Unless otherwise prohibited, limited access scallop vessels, also issued a valid groundfish permit, that have declared into a trip and that are fishing within the Sea Scallop Access Areas, may possess and land, per trip, up to a maximum of 1,000 lb of all groundfish combined.  Additionally, the restrictions for Atlantic cod, haddock, and yellowtail flounder are as follows:

  • Atlantic cod - Vessels may possess up to 100 lb of Atlantic cod per trip, provided such fish is for personal use only (you cannot sell, trade, or barter cod caught from access areas).
  • Haddock - Vessels may possess and land haddock up to the overall possession limit of all groundfish combined, except that vessels cannot possess or land haddock from January 1 through June 30.
  • Yellowtail flounder - PROHIBITED

Groundfish Possession Limits on Scallop DAS Trips: Unless otherwise prohibited, limited access scallop vessels also issued a valid groundfish permit that have declared into the scallop DAS program may possess and land, per trip:

  • Groundfish - A maximum of 300 lb of all species combined.
  • Yellowtail flounder - PROHIBITED.

 

Fishing Year 2020 Rotational Area Coordinates

Access Areas for Fishing Year 2020

Closed Area I Access Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

CAIA1

41°30′

68°30′

CAIA2

40°58′

68°30′

CAIA3

40°54.95′

68°53.37′

CAIA4

41°04′

69°01′

CAIA5

41°30′

69°23′

CAIA1

41°30′

68°30′

 

Mid-Atlantic Access Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

MAA1

39°30′

73°10′

MAA2

39°30′

72°30′

MAA3

38°30′

73°30'

MAA4

38°10′

73°30'

MAA5

38°10′

74°20′

MAA6

38°50′

74°20′

MAA7

38°50′

73°42′

MAA1

39°30′

73°10′

 

Nantucket Lightship-North Access Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

NLSN1

40°50′

69°30′

NLSN2

40°50′

69°00′

NLSN3

40°28′

69°00′

NLSN4

40°28′

69°30′

NLSN1

40°50′

69°30′

 

Nantucket Lightship-South-Deep Access Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

NLSSD1

40°22′

69°30′

NLSSD2

40°15′

69°30′

NLSSD3

40°15′

69°00′

NLSSD4

40°28′

69°00′

NLSSD5

40°28′

69°17′

NLSSD1

40°22′

69°30′

 

Closed Area II Access Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

Note

CAIIA1

41°30′

67°20′

 

CAIIA2

41°11′

67°20′

 

CAIIA3

41°11′

66°41′

 

CAIIA4

41°00′

66°41′

 

CAIIA5

41°00′

(1)

(2)

CAIIA6

41°30′

(3)

(2)

CAIIA1

41°30′

67°20′

 

1 The intersection of 41°00′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 41°00′ N. lat. and 66°09.33′ W. long.

2 From Point CAIIA5 connected to Point CAIIA6 along the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary.

3 The intersection of 41°30′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 41°30′ N. lat., 66°34.73′ W. long.

Closed Areas for Fishing Year 2020

Closed Area II-Southwest and Extension Closed Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

Note

CAIISWE1

41°11′

67°20′

 

CAIISWE2

41°11′

66°41′

 

CAIISWE3

41°0′

66°41′

 

CAIISWE4

41°0′

(1)

(2)

CAIISWE5

40°40′

(3)

(2)

CAIISWE6

40°40′

67°20′

 

CAIISWE1

41°11′

67°20′

 

1 The intersection of 41°0′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 41°0′ N. lat. and 66°09.33′ W. long.

2 From Point CAIISWE 4 connected to Point CAIISWE5 along the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary.

3 The intersection of 40°40′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 40°40′ N. lat. and 65°52.61′ W. long.

Nantucket Lightship-Triangle Closed Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

NLST1

40°28′

69°30′

NLST2

40°28′

69°17′

NLST3

40°22′

69°30′

NLST1

40°28′

69°30′

 

Stellwagen Bank Closed Area

Point

N latitude

W longitude

SB1

42°26′

70°27′

SB2

42°26′

70°15′

SB3

42°20′

70°15′

SB4

42°20′

70°27′

SB1

42°26′

70°27′

 

 

Last updated by Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office on June 17, 2020