Scalloping in Citrus County Serves up a Tasty Treasure Hunt

By: Lauren Tjaden


It’s part treasure hunt. It’s part snorkeling adventure. And it’s pure fun for your whole gang.

I’m talking about scalloping in Citrus County, a tasty Sunshine State tradition. In this adventure, you gather scallops on the grassy sea beds just offshore of the Gulf of Mexico. All you need is a snorkel, a mask, and an appetite for seafood.

If you’re worried about plunging into the deep, don’t be. It’s more like plunging into the shallows. The seagrass beds along the shores of Crystal River and Homosassa are only five or six feet underwater, and seafood lovers of all ages can enjoy the experience.

Licensed guides are a popular choice and provide all the necessary equipment.

If it sounds like your kind of fun, start planning your getaway before the next high tide. Scalloping season starts June 28 and continues through Sept. 24, 2014. For more information on Citrus County scalloping and a list of guides, check out this info from the Citrus County Visitors and Convention Bureau.

The Rules:

  • Scallopers over the age of 16 need a Florida fishing license.
  • State regulations allow each person to collect two gallons of whole bay scallops or one pint of meat, with no more than 10 gallons of whole scallops or half a gallon of meat on any vessel at any time.
  • Scallops may be taken only by hand or with a landing or dip net.

Do you know where your snorkel is?

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