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Thread: Federal seasons and Premitted Area

  1. #1

    Default Federal seasons and Premitted Area

    We had a great 3 day federal season. Several boats went and limited out (spearfishing) on big fish every day. Two observations, there are large concentrations of lion fish on everything we dove and while we were out there we saw a commercial snapper boat dragging a long line around all our coops. While we have no chance of altering catch limits or seasons, we might be successful in pushing the commercial guys out of the permitted areas. The logic being, these areas were state permitted, reefs were built with “state, local and privet funds”. In addition to the fact they contributed nothing to the creation of the areas, the combination of them (6K pound trip limit) and lionfish putting pressure on these areas 365 days a year will be devastating. It would be great if they were exclusion zones with limited recreational fishing. I also understanding, worst case they become total exclusion zone and we lose 3 days (or less) of fishing. But these areas would replenish state waters.
    Do you think this would be worth organizations like ours pursuing?

    Just a few thoughts

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    I live in Val-p, FL. My boat lives in Niceville & I dive off the coast of Destin.
    Posts
    4,842

    Default

    JFG,

    It is unfortunate that long lines are being pulled around reefs that private individuals paid for but, it is perfectly legal for commercial fishermen to fish in Federal waters.

    When a drop permit is signed, you sign that you agree that anyone that finds the reef has the right to fish it. Most people who find a reef will make it their special new spot and guard the numbers and only take a hand full of fish from time to time but, if a commercial fisherman or a party boat hits a prolific small reef, they can rape it clean in no time flat. Very sad since it takes about a year to become a prolific reef. Once raped, it will take quite a while to re-populate.

    Obviously, anyone can take up a cause and fight but, it takes time and commitment. I don't have the time for another fight.

    Right now, my focus is on the passage of the "Reef Assassin Act" lionfish population control legislation and lengthening the recreational access to the Red Snapper fishery in Federal Waters.
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

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