FWC Marine Fisheries hosting local summer workshop on July 21, 2015.
FWC wants to hear from you about how Florida’s marine fisheries should be managed. Whether you are a seafood aficionado who wants priority placed on getting fish to the dinner plate, a recreational fisher who prefers to catch and release or a commercial fisher whose catch is destined for restaurants and homes around the state and beyond, the FWC wants to know what marine fisheries issues concerned you. This is your chance to let the FWC know what it is doing right, where you see opportunities for improvement, and what you think should be the state’s top priorities for marine fisheries management.
To gather this input and develop a better understanding of the public’s views on marine fisheries, the FWC is hosting several workshops across the state throughout the month of July. Groups that might be interested in participating include commercial and recreational fishers, wholesale dealers, those in the tourism industry, fishing guides, divers and concerned citizens.
At the meetings, staff will provide a brief presentation about statewide and regional fisheries management issues that are being worked on and other potential issues that have been brought to our attention. Then it will be your turn to fill in any gaps and let us know where you think the FWC should focus its efforts in the coming years.
FWC is hosting a workshop 6-8 pm in Fort Pierce at the Garden Club at 911 Parkway Drive. The public is invited. Click here for more information.
FWC initially approves barracuda conservation measures in south Florida
FWC gave initial approval to several barracuda conservation measures after hearing concerns from various south Florida stakeholder groups about potential declines in barracuda populations.
These proposed changes will come back before the Commission at its September meeting in Weston for final approval. If approved at that time, changes will apply in state and federal waters off Collier, Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Martin counties only, where the majority of barracuda population concerns have been voiced, and will include:
- Creating a recreational and commercial slot limit of 15 to 36 inches,
- Creating a recreational daily bag limit of two fish per person, and
- Creating a commercial daily trip limit of 20 fish per person.
Because there are no species-specific regulations for barracuda, they are currently subject only to general statewide regulations, which include a default recreational bag limit of two fish or 100 pounds, whichever is greater. There are no commercial trip limits and no regulations in federal waters. Click here for more information.
Take 10 lionfish, get an extra lobster during sport season
FWC is encouraging divers to remove invasive lionfish by allowing them to take one extra spiny lobster each day during the two-day sport season this summer (July 29-30) if they also harvest 10 lionfish. Click here to view more information.
Gray triggerfish size limit increases in Atlantic state waters effective July 9, 2015
At its April 15 meeting in Tallahassee, FWC approved increasing the minimum size limit of gray triggerfish in Atlantic state waters from 12 inches fork length to 14 inches fork length.
This change makes Atlantic state water regulations consistent with new federal regulations. The change also makes the minimum size limit for gray triggerfish in Atlantic state waters (from shore to 3 nautical miles) the same as it is in Gulf state waters (from shore to 9 nautical miles). This minimum size limit applies to both recreational and commercial harvest.
The recreational harvest of snook in Atlantic state and federal waters closed on June 1, 2015
Snook will reopen for harvest in Atlantic state and federal waters on Sept 1, 2015. Snook is also closed for harvest in Gulf of Mexico state and federal waters, including Everglades National Park and Monroe County, through Aug 31, but reopening Sept 1. Click here to view more information.
FWC’s June newsletter, Fishing in the Know, is available for viewing
FWC’s monthly newsletter keeps you informed about upcoming season openings and closures, regulation changes, important events such as fishing clinics, Commission meetings and workshops, and more. Fishing in the Know is the new name for what many have known for years as the Hot Sheet.
Click here to view more information.
Nine New Saltwater Grand Slams for Florida
FWC has introduced nine new Saltwater Grand Slams. Grand Slams challenge anglers to catch three specific fish species in a 24-hour period.
The new Grand Slams include:
- Inshore Grand Slam: red drum, spotted seatrout, flounder
- Family Slam: any three fish in the same family (example: red drum, black drum and spotted seatrout)
- Blue Water Slam: dolphin, sailfish, wahoo
- Florida Grand Slam: permit, tarpon, bonefish
- Shoreline Slam: sheepshead, whiting, Florida pompano
- Reefs and Rubble Slam: black sea bass, gag, gray triggerfish
- Nearshore Slam: cobia, tripletail, king mackerel
- Bay and Estuary Slam: gray (mangrove) snapper, snook, Spanish mackerel
- Small Fry Slam (for children 15 and under): pinfish, grunt, catfish
Click here to view more information.