The ICES Scallop Assessment Working Group (WGScallop) discuss the key issues surrounding scallop species and is working towards the development and improvement of appropriate stock assessment methods. The Working Group (WG) shares expertise on survey methodologies, ad-vances in technology and recent studies on scallop species. The information and knowledge sharing is a key component of this group which improves scientific understanding of scallop populations, biology and fisheries.
The review paper on dredge efficiency is in draft and the group aim to publish next year. Surveys continue to be kept under review and the WG will attempt a staff exchange when travel is per-mitted.
A data call was agreed in 2019 and issued in 2020 and 2021. This allowed the collation of scallop fisheries data, and time was spent reviewing the quality of data received and making improve-ments to the data call. The fisheries data are reported in the annual WG reports and have been utilised for scallop stock assessments.
The WG formed a subgroup to assess king scallop stock(s) in the northern Irish Sea (around Isle of Man). The WG collated data and are developing a modelled survey index which will be used with fisheries data to assess the stock. The group discussed the merits of using Surplus Produc-tion Model in Continuous Time (SPiCT) and this work will continue through the sub group. It is envisaged that by the end of WGScallop next three-year term, the science will be sufficiently developed to allow for an ICES Viewpoint on king scallop stock status in this area to be pub-lished.
Priorities for future work include scallop stock connectivity, larval dispersal and genetics, and the WG have recruited a number of PhD students. The WG aim to collaborate with other WGs and preliminary discussions have started with the Working Group on Operational Oceano-graphic Products for Fisheries and Environment (WGOOFE), Working Group on Spatial Fisher-ies Data (WGSFD) and Working Group on the Assessment of Demersal Stocks in the North Sea and Skagerrak (WGNSSK). The WG continues to work alongside the Workshop on Scallop Aging (WKSA).