SALTONSTALL KENNEDY GRANT PROGRAM
Sea Scallop Enhancement and Sustainable....
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GRANT NUMBER:  NA66FD0027           NMFS NUMBER:   95-NER-139

REPORT TITLE:  Sea Scallop Enhancement and Sustainable Harvesting

AUTHOR: Westport Scalloping Corporation

PUBLISH DATE:  December 1, 1998

AVAILABLE FROM:  National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Region, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930-2298.  TELEPHONE:   (978) 281-9267

ABSTRACT

The Seastead Project has been a three year effort to demonstrate sea scallop, Placopecten magellanicus, resource enhancement off the coast of Massachusetts fishing industry base by developing (1) means to transport scallops live, (2) methods to grow-out transplanted scallops on the bottom and in the water column, (3) criteria for managing scallop grow-out areas, and (4) means to identify potential grow-out areas. The emphasis was to develop and demonstrate the technology to enhance sea scallop production, on a sustainable and environmentally sound basis, using the existing New England fishing industry and infrastructure. Seastead is a collaboration between scientists and the sea scallop fishing industry to examine potential scallop enhancement/production strategies. After 30 months of effort all required permits had been secured for the first aquaculture research area in U.S. federal waters. The twenty-four square-kilometer area is located 15 kilometers south of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, USA and is now closed to mobile gear and dedicated to researching culture and enhancement strategies. The site is in an open ocean location subject to large waves and strong currents. The site has been stocked with wild-caught scallops. Approximately 40,000 scallops, ranging in shell height from 40-100 mm, were placed in bottom cages, suspended nets, and loose on the bottom in 1997. The scallops were monitored for growth and mortality.  In 1998, an additional 80,000 scallops, ranging inshell height from 50-140mm, were direct seeded on the bottom. The scallops seeded on the bottom were monitored using an underwater video camera sled. The scallops in the cages were hauled and measured. Sub-samples of all groups of scallops were evaluated for health and condition at times during the project. Data was collected to allow for an economic analysis of the culture strategies.

 
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