Scallop Fishing


  • Scallops may only be taken by hand and only the licence holder can dive for scallops.
  • You must be 10 years or older to hold a scallop licence.
  • ​​You cannot take scallops on behalf of another scallop licence holder.  

Aboriginal fishing

Aboriginal people​ engaged in aboriginal fishing are exempt from holding a recreational fishing licence but must comply with all other rules.


See the Recreational Fishing Seasons page for current information on season dates.

The scallop fishing season is normally open from the Saturday before Easter to the end of July. The D'Entrecasteaux Channel is managed as a separate scallop fishing area to other state waters and has been closed for the past few seasons to allow stocks to recover.

Size, bag and possession limits

​Daily Bag Limit 
(species combined)
​Possession Limit (species combined)
Minimum Size​
Scallop l​icence holder
​50 scallops
(Total catch for the day regardless of how many trips you make)
On water - 50 scallops*
​On land - 100 scallops (or 3 kg of scallop meat​)
Commercial scallop - 100mm

Queen scallop - 100mm

Doughboy - 80mm​​



Non-licensed person

On water - 0 scallops
​​On land - 100 scallops (or 3 kg of scallop meat)
​*Highgrading your catch is not allowed.  You can't bring more than your daily bag limit back to the boat or shore and sort them there. Fish are regarded as taken and in your possession as soon as collected or caught.​​​

Doughboy Commercial and Queen Scallops

Doughboy, Commercial and Queen scallops


Measure scallops across the widest part of the shell

Measuring and handling scallops

Scallops are measured across the widest part of the shell (usually parallel to the hinge). 

You can not take or possess undersize scallops or have more than your daily bag limit. You should measure and count your scallops as you dive to ensure you are within your limits.  ​

Free measuring gauges are available from Service Tasmania outlets and some tackle shops.

Can you eat scallops at sea?

Scallops may be shucked for immediate consumption at sea as long as the shells are retained and brought ashore along with the rest of the catch. Any scallops consumed count towards your daily bag limit. Landing shucked scallop meats is prohibited.

Area restrictions

Net and Line Area Restrictions

D'Entrecasteaux Channel

The D'Entrecasteaux Channel is the area bounded in the south by a line from Scott Point to the northern tip of Partridge Island, then from the southern tip of that island to the Labillardiere Peninsula and in the north by a line from Dennes Point to Piersons Point.

All other State waters will be open for the recreational scallop season, except those that are restricted as Marine Nature Reserves, Fisheries Research Areas or marine farms without the permission of the leaseholder.

Consider the water quality of where you are taking scallops, particularly if you intend to eat the roe. See the Safety of Shellfish for Eating page for more information.

D'Entrecasteaux Channel scallop management

The policy is to keep the Channel closed until there is a substantial rebuilding of scallops stocks with a range of size classes distributed in the Channel not just highly localised stocks.

Research demonstrates that scallops (Pecten fumatus) in the Channel are genetically different than those on the East Coast. This indicates that the Channel is 'self seeding' and reliant on scallop stock populations from within the Channel. This highlights the importance of protecting areas of high density spawning stock to increase the likelihood of steady and/or significant recruitment pulses for the Channel.
The Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies conducts annual monitoring of the Channel and the results are considered by the Recreational Fisheries Advisory Committee.   As monitoring indicates that there has been no substantial rebuilding of scallops stocks the area remains closed.

Scallop illustrations by Peter Gouldthorpe


Recreational Fishing Enquiries
Level 3, 134 Macquarie St
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 03 6165 3233, 1300 720 647