Marine - Shellfish


SCDNR may grant permits, in accordance with state law (Section 50-5-900), to any state resident for the exclusive use of state bottoms or waters for commercial shellfish mariculture. Mariculture is defined as the controlled cultivation of shellfish in confinement from seed size (<=1 inch) until harvest (Section 50-5-15).

South Carolina Code of Laws – Title 50, Chapter 5, Article 9– Marine Resources Act- Shellfish

SCDHEC Mariculture Public Notices

Any comments to SCDHEC mariculture public notices in the above link must be sent directly to SCDHEC. If comments to SCDHEC public notices are sent to SCDNR they will not be forwarded and will not count.

*Please note SCDHEC and SCDNR mariculture public notice periods may not occur simultaneously.

SCDNR Public Notices for Mariculture

Latitude Longitude Map (Link) Gear – Type and amount County Water Body -bottoms and/or water (floating) Public Notice Period (Begin – End)
      No active SCDNR Public Notices        


Any comments concerning the issuance of this permit may be submitted by email to:
Office of Fisheries Management
Shellfish Management

Or in writing to:

Attn: Office of Fisheries Management
Department of Natural Resources
P.O. Box 12559
Charleston, SC 29422

*Comments will be accepted up to 7 days following the Notice Period End Date.

Mariculture Permit Terms and Conditions

Mariculture permits from SCDNR are valid for a 5-year term and may be renewed for additional terms. Annual rent and other conditions apply, such as but not limited to, commercial use as well as adherence to permit conditions and natural resource laws.

Mariculture Best Management Practices

Compliance monitoring is conducted by SCDNR to ensure adherence to permit conditions and natural resource laws on a regular basis for all permits.

Existing Mariculture Permits

Species Type
Clam (only) Bottom
Oyster (only) Bottom
Both (clam/oyster) Bottom
Oyster Water Column
*2 water column permits listed above are impoundments

Siting Guidance for Applicants

Mariculture mapping application
Select the image to open an interactive mariculture siting tool.

The Shellfish Mariculture Interactive Map Application was created to give potential mariculture applicants an understanding of potential locations where applications for sites might be accepted. Location, purpose, and size will determine level of scrutiny by permitting agencies. Existing permitted mariculture areas are located on the map along with other areas of exemption or concern regarding siting. Select a shaded area on map to see details.

Mariculture Permit Application

Mariculture permitting is complex and requires coordination of three permitting agencies, two state and one federal. The SCDNR Shellfish Management office will assist applicants with initiating this permitting process.

Prior to completing the mariculture permit application please contact the Shellfish Management Mariculture Coordinator to ensure you are eligible and what permits/fees are involved - 843-953-0126

Mariculture Permit Application (PDF)

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