Isle of Man Fishing Industry
Fresh caught Isle of Man Scallops

Isle of Man Fishing Industry

The majority of commercial vessels on the island fish for King and Queen scallops. There is also an inshore fleet which fish for brown crab, lobsters and whelks. There is a closed season for King scallops which runs from June 1st to October 31st where it is illegal to fish for King scallops in Manx waters. Queen scallops can be fished all the year round.

Traditional methods are used for the commercial harvesting of scallops around the Island. A dredge consists of a metal rectangular frame to which a bag-shaped net of metal rings is attached. There are gear restrictions in place regarding dredges in order to protect the fishery. Trawling is the most common fishing method for queen scallops by Manx boats and can simply be described as towing a net through the water.

The trawl net is funnel-shaped and can harvest queen scallop as well as some bottom-dwelling fish when towed along the ocean floor.

Crab and Lobster Fishery

The Isle of Man has a thriving crab and lobster fishery. There are a maximum number of pots that are allocated to the fishery by the Isle of Man Department of Agriculture, Fisheries & Forestry, which are then divided up to the boats that hold a specific licence to fish pots in the Isle of Man Territorial Sea. By limiting the number of pots allowed to be fished within the Territorial Sea, this prevents over-fishing and allows time for breeding.