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redfish catch

FWC will make changes in Pasco catch-and-release area

By Florida's Original NatureCoaster™ Posted on May 14, 2021

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will make changes to snook, redfish and spotted seatrout management in the area of Pasco County Florida where they are currently catch-and-release only. 

As a reminder, snook, redfish and spotted seatrout were temporarily made catch-and-release only in this area after these fisheries were impacted by a 2017-2019 severe red tide. 

Starting June 1, 2021, normal regulations will resume for snook, redfish, and spotted seatrout in all state waters in Pasco County, Pinellas County, and Tampa Bay.

The current catch-and-release measures for snook, redfish and spotted seatrout in all waters from Pasco County through Gordon Pass in Collier County remain in effect through May 31, 2021. 

Normal regulations will resume for snook, redfish, and spotted seatrout in all state waters in Pasco County

“The Commission understands the significance and importance of this fishery for the southwest region. You can hear a lot of diversity in the public stakeholder positions on this issue but I think we found the right path as an interim step,” said FWC Vice Chairman Mike Sole. “It is going to be important though, in my opinion, to consider long-term management of snook and redfish.” 

Under normal regulations, snook will open to harvest on Sept. 1, and seatrout will be under new, more restrictive regulations that took effect in 2020.  

A new statewide stock assessment was just completed for snook and one will be completed for redfish in 2021. The Commission might consider statewide regulation changes as part of the long-term management of these fisheries. 

Learn more about regulations for these species by visiting MyFWC.com/Marine and clicking on “Recreational Regulations.” 

View the Commission meeting presentation at MyFWC.com/Commission by clicking on “Commission Meetings” and the agenda under “May 12-13, 2021.”

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