Scallop, Queen, scallops

Mimachlamys varia

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Sail and oar
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Picture of Scallop, Queen, scallops

Sustainability rating three info

Sustainability overview

For more information about this rating please visit:

Cornwall Good Seafood Guide Cornwall Good Seafood Guide

Biology

Queenies are a fast growing species with a maximum lifespan that rarely exceeds five years. Queen scallops are simultaneous hermaphrodites (i.e. an individual has both male and female reproductive organs) and become sexually mature at 1-2 years at approximately 40mm shell height. Although smaller than King scallops they can grow up to about 90mm. Queen scallops are broadcast spawners (i.e. they release eggs and sperms into the sea) and can spawn in both spring and summer. When one individual spawns, pheromones contained in the eggs and sperms released into the water column, signal to neighbouring scallops to release their own eggs and sperms ensuring synchronous spawning. Thus, in order for spawning (and subsequently recruitment) to successfully occur Queen scallops need to be present at relatively high densities. In low density populations there is a risk that the spawning stock may not be present at high enough densities to successfully reproduce (i.e. there are too few individuals around to come into contact for fertilisation), a phenomenon known as the Allee effect. They are usually found at depths down to about 100m on sand or gravel. It feeds on plankton and other organic material by filter feeding. They reach market size of 55mm (minimum landing size in Isle of Man; 40mm for rest of the Irish Sea) within 2-3 years depending on the available micro-algae feed from the water column.

Stock information

Criterion score: 0.25 info

Stock Area

Cornwall

Stock information

Management

Criterion score: 0.5 info

Capture Information

Criterion score: 0.25 info