The 2017 season for harvesting bay scallops in Wakulla County has started and it runs all the way to September 24, giving you plenty of time to harvest these succulent delicacies!
Learn how to scallop before hitting the shores
One of the great things about harvesting bay scallops is that it’s simple enough for anyone to do it. Unlike some types of fishing, you don’t need extensive practice and expensive lessons just to be successful. All you really need is some underwater gear (mask, snorkel, fins, etc.) and a net, and you can get in on the scalloping action. Although a boat will usually allow you to get to the best scalloping grounds in the region, it isn’t strictly required.
Everything you need to have in order to scallop
When it comes to the 2017 scalloping season in Wakulla County, safety and abiding by the law are the top concerns. In terms of safety, you need to ensure you are taking every possible precaution to protect yourself and others when you hit the water. This includes:
- Swimming with a partner
- Putting up a dive flag so others know where you are
- Bringing plenty of drinking water
- Using sun protection
Legality is the other main issue you need to be aware of. Scalloping in Wakulla County waters requires you to have an active Florida saltwater fishing license accessible on you at all times. Additionally, make sure you abide by the harvesting limits set by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission:
- 2 gallons whole bay scallops in shell, or 1 pint of bay scallop meat per person
- Maximum of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell, or 1/2 gallon bay scallop meat per vessel
Getting the most out of your scallop harvest
Bay scallops from Wakulla County have a sweet and mild flavor of the sea and is the perfect complement to many different dishes. All you need is a little butter, salt, and pepper to make delicious scallops, but there are numerous ways to jazz them up a little as well. Consider stirring them into a pasta dish with fresh sautéed summer vegetables. Just make sure to wait and add them near the end; these little beauties can overcook quickly and become rubbery if you aren’t careful.
What to do after you hit the waters
Scalloping is just the beginning of your exploration into all that Wakulla County has to offer. Use your scalloping excursion as an excuse to stay with us for a long weekend, and save some time for some other activities such as horseback riding on the coast or traversing the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge.