A Family Tradition in Crystal RiverScalloping in the Gulf Coast
Crystal River is one of the most popular destinations in Florida for recreational scalloping.
There's no better place to make your scalloping home away from home than Plantation on Crystal River. We offer scalloping package options including accommodations and breakfast, with and without a charter guide. And if you like to do it all on your own, our Adventure Center Marina & Dive Shop has all the provisions and supplies to make your Florida scalloping trip a memory maker.
Discover Scalloping from Crystal River to Homosassa Bay, Florida
If you have never scalloped but love eating them, think of an Easter egg hunt while swimming above shallow saltwater grass flats. All you need is a mesh bag to place your scallops, as well as a mask and snorkel, although fins are helpful to be able to cover more area. Scallops are not easy nor too hard to find as their natural coloring provides camouflage within the sea grasses. Most of the time their shells are open to feed and breathe, revealing vibrant blue "eyes," but if they sense danger they slam their shells shut and can swim backwards or up by clapping its shell halves together.
Scalloping in the Gulf Coast is Fun
To scallop, you simply float along the surface or gently swim over our expansive grass flats in four to six feet of water, enjoying the various fish, plants, and coral until you spot those vibrant blue "eyes" or the bay scallop's well-recognized shell shape. Hold your breath, take a shallow dive down, place either your hand or small dip net behind or under the scallop, and gently place it in your mesh bag. Whether you choose the waters of Crystal Bay or nearby Homosassa Bay, once you or your group have reached your bag limit, head back to our marina and the Chef of our West 82º Grill can cook them up for you!
Rules and Regulations
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission regulates harvesting of scallops, like it does all of Florida's fisheries, and the recreational bay scallop harvest season begins the last Saturday in June (unless July 4th is a Saturday) and ends September 24. A saltwater fishing license is required if you enter the water by boat. The daily limit is two gallons of whole bay scallops in shell, or one pint of bay scallop meat per person; maximum of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell, or half a gallon bay scallop meat per vessel.
The Best Location for Scalloping
Once abundant throughout Florida, bay scallops of healthy populations that can support a recreational harvest can only be found in few locations along the Gulf coast, and Crystal River with its pristine waters is a prime location.