Limited Gulf red snapper days announced for October
Don’t put those bottom-fishing rigs away for the winter just yet. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) just announced three additional weekend openings for recreational red snapper fishing in Florida’s Gulf of Mexico waters. The dates (Saturdays and Sundays) are Oct. 12, 13, 19, 20, 26 and 27.
Using data collected through the Gulf Reef Fish Survey initiative (that free line item you sign up for when you update your fishing license) and other sources, the FWC determined that only three-quarters of the annual red snapper quota for recreational anglers was caught during the June 11-July 12 summer season. That leaves some additional fish to catch, without transgressing annual catch limits.
This season will apply to private recreational anglers in state and federal waters, and to state for-hire operations in state waters only.
In the case of red snapper, Florida has responsibility for managing recreational landings not only in state waters (out to 9 miles in the Gulf), but also adjacent federal waters, through an Exempted Permit granted by NOAA Fisheries. That responsibility—predicated on advances in data collection–is expected to continue for future seasons once formal approval is granted to the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council Reef Fish Amendment 50.