AUGUSTA — Inner Cranberry Isle will remain open on a limited basis for scallop divers for the remainder of the season.
Fishermen reports and DMR survey work have revealed high concentrations of seed scallops in or near the Cranberry Isle rotational area, which was closed the past two seasons as part of the department’s rotational management plan. The area includes the MDI Limited Access Area, which encompasses Somes Sound. After seven weeks of fishing primarily in the inner portion of the rotational area, the majority of drag boats have moved out of the area, indicating that a significant proportion of the harvestable product has been landed from the inner Cranberry Isle area. Therefore, an immediate closure of the inner portion of the Cranberry Isle Area, including the Mount Desert Island Limited Access Area is being implemented for the remainder of the season. The area will remain open to hand harvest. Because very little fishing has occurred in the offshore portion of the rotational area and the area south of the Cranberry Isles shall remain open to both draggers and divers.