Snook Reopens on Atlantic Side Only


Captain Squeeky Kelly goes crazy for snook in September. He’ll have to release this short fish in his home waters near Jensen Beach.

The recreational season for snook opens Sept. 1 in Florida’s Atlantic coastal and inland waters, including Lake Okeechobee and the Kissimmee River. The season remains closed in all Gulf of Mexico waters, including Everglades National Park and Monroe County, through Aug. 31, 2013.

Anglers may report their catch on the Snook Gamefish Foundation’s website by clicking on “Angler Action.” This information is important to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) in completing stock assessments on species such as snook.

Anglers may catch and release snook during the Gulf closure. The FWC encourages everyone to handle these fish carefully to help ensure their survival upon release.

In the Atlantic, anglers may keep one snook between 28 and 32 inches total length per day. The Atlantic season will close Dec. 15.

Fishermen targeting snook must have a snook permit as well as a saltwater license unless they are exempt from having a license. Using snatch hooks and spears is prohibited. It is illegal to buy or sell snook.

This Gulf closure went into effect Dec. 15, 2010, after the population was impacted by prolonged cold weather. The closure will give the Gulf snook population time to rebound, says the FWC.