Marine Fisheries items to be discussed July 10-11 at the Orange County Convention Center FFWCC meeting
Information: The FWC Commission will listen to public testimony on and discuss several marine fisheries management items at the July 10-11 meeting in Orlando. Commission meetings are open to the public.
Potential regulation changes (final decisions on these topics discussed July 11 may be made at this meeting):
Gag grouper: Proposed changes to open the recreational harvest of gag grouper in state waters off Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson and Taylor counties from Sept. 1 through Dec. 31. This action would add additional dates to the current April 1 through June 30 season for these four counties. Gulf state waters outside of that area (excluding Monroe County) and all Gulf federal waters are open June 1 through Dec. 31. A proposed change to make the commercial minimum size limit for gag grouper consistent with recent changes in federal waters will also be considered.
Gray triggerfish: Proposed changes to make regulations in Gulf state waters similar to recent changes in Gulf federal waters and to consider a 2017 limited fall season. Potential changes include increasing the recreational size limit from 14 to 15 inches fork length in Gulf state waters, decreasing the recreational bag limit from two to one fish per person per day in Gulf state waters, and creating a closed season from Jan. 1 through the end of February, while maintaining the June 1 through July 31 closed season that is already in place.
Draft regulation changes (these items will be discussed July 10 and if approved, will be brought back to a future meeting for final decision):
Sheepshead and Tripletail: Potential draft changes for statewide management of these two species includes extending management for sheepshead and tripletail into federal waters, reducing the daily recreational bag limit for sheepshead from 15 to five, creating a new commercial daily trip limit for sheepshead of 200 per person outside of peak spawning season, creating a 50 per person commercial trip limit and recreational bag limit during peak spawning months of March and April, increasing the minimum size limit for tripletail from 15 to 18 inches, and reducing the tripletail daily commercial trip limit to two fish per person.
Cobia: Potential draft changes to create a Gulf/Atlantic cobia management boundary defining all waters north of the Monroe-Collier county line as Gulf state waters, increase the minimum size limit in Gulf state waters from 33 inches to 38 inches fork length, reduce the commercial trip limit from two to one fish per person in Gulf state waters, and reduce the recreational and commercial vessel limit to two per vessel per day in Gulf state waters.
Federal fishery Congressional (July 10) and management (July 11) updates
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