MOUNT DESERT, Maine — A local fishermen is looking for help from the public in locating a large plastic tub of scallop guts he mistakenly put in the wrong vehicle.

The preserved scallop bits were put in a blue Chevy sedan with University of Maine plates around 3 p.m. Monday at Somesville One Stop, according to the fisherman’s wife, Michelle Mays. Mays contacted several area police departments Monday night in an effort to find the missing guts.

Andy Mays, a Southwest Harbor lobsterman, had been collecting scallops for the past six months as part of a research project through Darling Marine Center, UMaine’s marine research facility in Walpole. He’d gutted the bivalves, isolated different organs and stored them in formaldehyde, according to his wife.

Monday, Andy Mays was supposed to deliver the research material to a graduate student, who had agreed to meet him at Somesville One Stop.

“He saw a vehicle with UMaine plates, put [the scallop guts] in, and walked inside expecting to meet the student, who he knows,” Mays said. “When they weren’t there, he went back outside and the car was gone.”

Michelle Mays, who has been calling around in an effort to find the Chevy’s driver while her husband is offshore lobstering, said she’s worried the guts will end up in a rubbish bin — six months of research diving wasted.

“What we don’t want is someone to say, ‘What the hell is this doing in my car?’ and throw it away,” she said.

Mays said her husband is no stranger to being in the news, but not in this way. He’s a member of the Scallop Advisory Council, and has been quoted in the paper before. But this goof may call for an order of humble pie.

“This might be the funniest thing he’s been in the paper for,” she said. “He might be a little embarrassed, but he’d get over it if he got the scallops back.”

Anyone with information about the whereabouts of the research material can contact the Ellsworth Police Department at 667-2168.

Follow Mario Moretto on Twitter at @riocarmine.

Mario Moretto

Mario Moretto has been a Maine journalist, in print and online publications, since 2009. He joined the Bangor Daily News in 2012, first as a general assignment reporter in his native Hancock County and,...