Redfish Limits Increase in Northern Florida

State broken into three management areas; northern bag limits double from 1 to 2 fish.

Florida fishermen targeting redfish in northern Florida can keep two fish starting Feb. 1, 2012, as part of management changes from the Key Largo Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) meeting November 16 and 17.

At the meeting, approved changes included the creation of three management areas for redfish (the northwest, the northeast and the south) instead of one statewide region. The northwest area includes waters from Escambia to Pasco counties, and the northeast area includes Nassau through Flagler counties. The south area covers Pinellas through Monroe counties on the west coast and Miami-Dade through Volusia counties on the east coast.

The exciting news is that northeast and northwest region anglers can keep two reds per day starting Feb. 1, 2012. The doubled daily bag limit was approved after a recent redfish stock assessment showed that drum escapement rates (the proportion of fish surviving through age 4 relative to the number that would have survived to that age if there were no fishery) have been consistently above the FWC’s 40-percent management goal in the northern regions.

Other new regulations that begin Feb. 12 include a statewide vessel limit of eight redfish, and a maximum number of six reds per person transported on land. All other recreational redfish rules remain the same, including a slot limit of 18 to 27 inches and a one-redfish bag limit in southern Florida.

“This is our version of having a listed protected species and being able to take it off that list. This is a success story,” said Commissioner Brian Yablonski about the increased redfishing limits. “If ever there was a moment to give back, this is it.”

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  • Flash

    I guess that is good news, although I would have like to seen the size limit increase to 19 or 20 inches also.

  • Receeational Angler

    They need to eliminate commercial fishing of all fish species that are deemed overfished. This is an example of how fish stocks come back without commercial fishing.

  • John McRae

    Nice catch. I'm talking to the red bass.

  • Lineslinger

    Yeah I agree with raising the min slot at least an inch, just not enough meat on a 18, not real sure about the increase though in all honesty, winter airboat creek fishermen are going to slaughter the population up my way



  • Bryan Spooner

    I think it's a good thing on increasing the bag limit on the Red Fish. I have been catching them in great numbers for years here in Pasco County. Now I can take two home for a cullinary masterpiece. I dont like what they have done with the comercial Trout limits though….

  • rusty

    I think the people making these rules are finally waking up. before the "laws" went into effect commercial trawlers could slaughter the breeding reds and inshore anglers could keep as many as could be caught. then years of no reds until the one redfish limit. poor managment along with everything else in this country. our environment goes out the window to $$$

  • Robert Kinchen

    If they were going to change the keeper limit it should have been for the whole state. Same for the Sea Trout. They need to elimante all this region crap. FWC & the Feds are on a power trip. If they put half as much effort into catching all the anglers who take undersized ( Oversized) fish and over limit ( Most of these people are not from this country )as they do making regs. Things might improve,,,, but no they want you to make the super market your next fishing spot. There you can get farmraised crap. Who know how many chemicals and growth hormones you'll be getting then.

    • Dubya

      Why increase limits in the south if the population hasn't increased? Not the brightest spoon in the drawer are ya?



  • Blake

    I have yet to see ENFORCEMENT of these laws. Last year, a dude kept 20 spotted trout off the Northern side of the Fred Howard causeway during schooling season. Did not care about limit. Park official was nowhere to be seen.

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