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The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is hosting several mutton snapper workshops this August to gather public input on potential management changes in state waters. FWC staff presented draft rules to the Commission at the June meeting and these rules will be brought back before the Commission for a final public hearing at the September meeting in St. Augustine.
Proposed rule changes to be discussed include:
Increasing the recreational, commercial, importation and sale minimum size limit from 16 to 18 inches total length.
Reducing the recreational bag limit from 10 to 3 fish per person within the 10-fish snapper aggregate bag limit.
Replacing the May through June commercial trip limit in all state waters with a 3-fish per person, per day limit from April through June in Atlantic state waters only.
Establishing a 300-pound commercial trip limit for the remainder of the year (July-March) in Atlantic state waters.
Staff will also be gathering public input on whether or not to create a closure at Western Dry Rocks, a major spawning site and popular fishing spot for mutton snapper located 11 miles southwest of Key West.
Workshops will be from 6 to 8 p.m. EST and are scheduled as follows:
Aug. 10 – St. Petersburg – Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, 3rd Floor Conference Room, 100 8th Ave. SE
Aug. 11 – Stuart – City of Stuart Commission Chambers, 121 SW Flagler Ave.
Aug. 15 – Dania Beach/Fort Lauderdale – Hilton Garden Inn, 180 SW 18th Ave.
Aug. 16 – Duck Key – Hawks Cay, 61 Hawks Cay Blvd.
Aug. 17 – Key West – Key West Marriott Beachside Hotel, 3841 N. Roosevelt Blvd.
Aug. 18 – Key Largo – Murray Nelson Government Center, 102050 Overseas Highway