Bay scallop season opens in St. Joseph Bay/Gulf County Aug. 16

The Destin Log

The 2023 recreational bay scallop season for St. Joseph Bay/Gulf County opens Aug. 16 and goes through Sept. 24.

Bay scallops

This region includes all state waters from the Mexico Beach Canal in Bay County to the western most point of St. Vincent Island in Franklin County.

The daily bag limit is two gallons of whole bay scallops in the shell or one pint of bay scallop meat per person, with a maximum of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in the shell or 1/2 gallon (4 pints) shucked bay scallop meat per vessel.

Throughout the season and region-wide, vessel limits do not allow an individual to exceed their personal bag limit.

Scallops may be collected by hand or with a landing or dip net.

There is no commercial harvest allowed for bay scallops in Florida.

For more information on bay scallop regulations, visit and click on “Recreational Regulations” and “Bay Scallops” under the “Crabs, Lobster and other Shellfish” tab.

A bucket of Florida bay scallops

Boater and scalloper safety

Be safe when diving for scallops. Wear a life jacket when underway and do not drink and boat. When scalloping in open water, divers should stay within 300 feet of a properly displayed divers-down flag or device, and within 100 feet of a properly displayed divers-down flag or device if on a river, inlet or navigation channel.

Stow it, don’t throw it

Please do not discard scallop shells in inshore waters commonly used for recreational activities such as near boat ramps or swimming areas. Piles of discarded scallop shells can create hazards for swimmers and damage seagrass habitat. Scallop shells can be discarded in a trash receptacle or in larger bodies of water where they are more likely to disperse. Also, don’t forget to stow your trash securely on your vessel so that it doesn’t blow overboard.