JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has changed fishing regulations for Red Drum (Redfish) throughout the state.
In a July 2022 commission meeting, new redfish regulations were approved. The new rules and regs are set to begin Sept. 1.
According to the FWC website, these regulation changes include:
· Establishing nine redfish management regions.
· Prohibiting captain and crew from retaining a bag limit of redfish when on a for-hire trip.
· Reducing the off-the-water transport limit from six to four fish per person.
· Reducing the vessel limit in each of the management regions to:
· Panhandle, Big Bend, Northeast: four fish.
· Tampa Bay, Sarasota Bay, Charlotte Harbor, Southwest, Southeast: two fish.
· Allowing only catch-and-release fishing for redfish in the Indian River Lagoon region.
· Setting the bag limit to one fish in the Panhandle, Big Bend, Tampa Bay, Sarasota Bay, Charlotte Harbor, Southwest, Southeast and Northeast regions.
The big change for those fishing the waters of the Northeast region, which covers Flagler through Nassau counties, is the change in the bag limit from two fish per person, per day to just one. Also, notable is the change in vessel limit from eight fish to four.
“With this new forward-thinking management approach, we’re trying to do what’s best for this fishery,” said FWC commissioner, Steven Hudson. “This agency is committed to working proactively to conserve the redfish fishery in Florida for future generations while balancing stakeholder interests.”
FWC also said that the new management approach includes annual reviews of the redfish fishery and that regulations may be changed each year as a response to the reviews.
For more information, including the July 2022 commission meeting presentation, visit MyFWC.com/Commission and click on “Commission Meetings.”