In this Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011, file photo, scallop meat is shucked at sea off Harpswell, Maine. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

LUBEC, Maine — Maine’s most productive scallop fishing grounds are closed for the remaining weeks of the state’s fishing season.

Cobscook Bay is home to the most fertile scalloping waters in Maine. The Maine Department of Marine Resources typically closes scalloping grounds early to prevent overfishing. The department decided to close Cobscook for the season on Sunday.

Maine’s state scalloping season begins in early winter and runs to early spring. The state has also recently closed a handful of other grounds, including the West Vinalhaven Islands, Upper Machias and Gouldsboro and Dyers Bay areas.

Maine’s scallop industry has been strong in recent years. Fishermen harvested more than 650,000 pounds of scallops in 2020. It was the third time the fishery eclipsed that figure since 2000.