Sea Scallop Survey of Two Mid-Atlantic Closed Areas

The following data are a subset of a survey conducted by Dr. William DuPaul, David Rudders, and John David "Wolf" Lange of the Virginia Institute of Marine Science. The goal of the survey was to quantify the abundance and distribution of sea scallops, Placopecten magellanicus, in and adjacent to the mid-Atlantic closed areas. These areas had been closed to all sea scallop harvest for two years prior to the survey in an attempt to increase the abundance and size structure of sea scallops in those areas.

The objective of the project was to conduct a survey of sea scallop abundance and size in the closed areas. Using two commercial sea scallop dredge vessels, the survey sampled roughly 400 pre-determined stations. The sampling gear consisted of two unmodified New Bedford style sea scallop dredges.

The data shown here are the results from a portion of the survey samples or "tows" conducted inside and adjacent to the boundaries of both the mid-Atlantic closed areas. Survey tows were selected on the basis of their proximity to the closed area boundaries. The data were grouped to examine the abundance and size structure of sea scallops both inside and outside the closed areas to see what affect closing the areas to fishing had on the sea scallop population. The data represent the average number of scallops caught at each shell height, either inside or outside of each closed area.

 
Average Scallop Shell Height Frequency
 
Virginia Beach Closed Area
Hudson Canyon Closed Area
Shell Height
(mm)
Outside of Closed Area
(n=16 tows)
Inside of Closed Area
(n=45 tows)
Outside of Closed Area
(n=35 tows)
Inside of Closed Area
(n=128 tows)
00.000.000.000.00
50.000.000.000.00
100.000.000.000.00
150.000.000.000.00
200.000.000.000.00
250.000.000.000.00
300.000.000.000.00
350.000.000.000.00
400.000.000.000.34
450.000.000.210.25
500.060.280.621.30
550.000.283.131.69
600.661.6311.077.67
650.591.4812.3913.96
700.532.1319.1627.87
750.666.0031.8161.25
804.5814.4049.88125.62
8511.0325.6689.19219.06
9014.2733.09120.99305.12
9515.4042.6089.98258.01
10015.9251.7062.37203.49
10510.6666.5233.43142.13
1105.4473.9319.9498.28
1151.7559.9814.8770.65
1200.0632.995.9531.03
1250.0011.563.3615.12
1300.133.971.575.38
1350.000.551.082.14
1400.000.000.870.93
1450.000.070.540.43
1500.000.000.210.16
1550.000.000.180.05
1600.000.000.140.02
1650.000.000.030.00
1700.000.000.000.00

Please do not cite without permission from the authors.

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