It's the Autumn Equinox. Scallops have spawned, shedding their sperm and eggs into the sea. Time to go get some scallop seed. We head out before the crack of dawn to the foot of Penobscot bay, off the end of Isle au Haut, where the Eastern Maine Coastal Current branches off from the Gulf of Maine Coastal Current which extends from Nova Scotia to Cape Cod. Fishing for scallop spat there guarantees that our bay's scallop farming always maintains good genetic diversity.
Aboard are blue mesh spat bags to collect the seed. These spat bags are attached to long lines with pot buoys and toggles at the top to show the set location. Hard trawl ball floats part way down maintain proper suspension level of the vertical line in the water column, and rocks at the base to serve as anchors.
Once a spot is chosen away from all the lobster fishing going on, it's heave ho. Overboard go the lines which will hang vertically in the water.
Then the anchoring rocks are rolled off the boat. This all looks like work and it is!
The skies clear, the sun comes out and the schooner Mary Day comes by as if to say "Good job well done." It's a pleasant trip back home.
The bags will be collected when the tiny scallops that entered the bags and settled there have grown and can be transferred to lantern nets on the scallop farm lease sites. There they will spend the next few years growing to delicious eating sizes.
Cooperating with Nature is such a win/win enterprise.