BRADENTON – Sunday is statwide license free fishing! Then, the first of September will bring about many changes in recreational fishing. For the first time in three years, snook season will repopen. However, tarpon and bonefish will become catch and release only for the first time. If you can dodge the afternoon thunderstorms, you can still target tarpon are also a good option around bridges at night and juveniles in creeks, canals and basins. Beat the heat by catch and release snook fishing before daylight in the ICW and then look for trout, blues, Spanish mackerel, tripletail and more in Sarasota Bay.
- The recreational harvest season for Florida’s premier game fish, snook, opens Sept. 1 statewide. Unique to the region, snook are one of the many reasons Florida is the Fishing Capital of the World.
- While the fishery is more than 90 percent catch-and-release, the FWC encourages anglers to use moderation when determining whether or not to take a snook home. Gulf snook populations were negatively impacted by a 2010 cold kill. Gulf snook numbers currently exceed FWC’s management goals but are still rebuilding to pre-cold-kill levels, which is one of the reasons why it is important to handle fish with care in this region and use moderation when determining whether or not to harvest one.
- When releasing a snook, proper handling methods can help ensure the species’ abundance for anglers today and generations to come. To learn more about catch-and-release, the best way to handle a fish, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click on “Saltwater” then “Recreational Regulations.”
Tarpon, bonefish become catch-and-release only on Sept. 1
- Two premier recreational fisheries will soon have new protections in place, a measure aimed at ensuring that tarpon and bonefish’s economic and fishing value remain for generations to come. Tarpon and bonefish become catch-and-release only fisheries beginning Sept. 1.
- The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved these proactive management measures at its June 12 meeting in Lakeland. The catch-and-release proposal was adopted in recognition of the fact that the economic and fishing values of bonefish and tarpon greatly exceed their value as food fishes.
- The following changes will go into effect Sept. 1 in state and federal waters off Florida:All harvest of tarpon will be eliminated, with the exception of the harvest or possession of a single tarpon when in pursuit of an International Game Fish Association record and in conjunction with a tarpon tag.
▪ Tarpon tags will be limited to one per person, per year except for properly licensed charter boat captains and fishing guides.
▪ Transport or shipment of tarpon becomes limited to one fish per person.
▪ There will be a one-fish-per-vessel limit for tarpon.
▪ Gear used for tarpon will be limited to hook-and-line only.
▪ Multiple hooks in conjunction with live or dead natural bait cannot be used to target or harvest tarpon, or to target bonefish.
▪ People will be allowed to temporarily possess a tarpon for photography, measurement of length and girth and scientific sampling, with the stipulation that tarpon more than 40 inches must remain in the water.
▪ Tarpon regulations will extend into federal waters.
▪ The bonefish tournament exemption permit is eliminated. This exemption allowed tournament anglers with the proper permit to temporarily possess bonefish for transport to a tournament scale.
To learn more about tarpon and bonefish, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click on “Saltwater” and “Recreational Regulations.”
Sunday is License Free Fishing!
- The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is waiving the saltwater fishing license requirement for all recreational anglers - residents and visitors - on Sunday, September 1.
- “The license-free fishing day on September 1 is a great way for families to enjoy Florida’s incredible saltwater fishing opportunities during the Labor Day holiday. Florida is the Fishing Capital of the World and this license-free weekend is a great opportunity to introduce friends and family who may have never experienced Florida saltwater fishing to enjoy the Sunshine States’ bountiful waters and historic fishing communities,” Gov. Rick Scott said.
- Currently, September 1 is the last saltwater license-free fishing day this year. However, the FWC is slated to consider adding four more days to the calendar during the September 5 meeting in Pensacola. If approved, there will be two more saltwater and two more freshwater license-free fishing days before the end of 2013.
Tampa Boat Show Sept 6-8
- This year’s Progressive Insurance Tampa Boat Show, the region’s premier boat show, makes a splash September 6-8, showcasing the best of boating with hundreds of new vessels to shop, plus the latest marine accessories and aquatic attractions for all ages.
- According to show manager Larry Berryman, the 48th annual event is a three-day boating extravaganza featuring activities for anyone interested in the boating lifestyle. “From fishermen to divers and novice boaters to experienced captains, the Progressive Insurance Tampa Boat Show has a wide range of activities to entertain and educate people of all ages and experience levels, including on-the-water training, a chance to SCUBA, dozens of boating and fishing seminars, and much more.”
- Tampa Boat Show will be held at the Tampa Convention Center Sept 6-8
High pressure north of the waters late this afternoon slowly tracks down into South Florida waters by Friday as a frontal boundary moves into the southeast U.S. For Saturday through Monday the high pressure builds back north...to across central Florida as the frontal boundary washes out. Isolated to scattered thunderstorms will provide the potential for higher winds and waves.
North winds around 5 knots then becoming west around 10 knots in the afternoon. Bay and inland waters a light chop. Isolated thunderstorms. Thursday night will bring northwest winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop. Isolated thunderstorms.
West winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop. Isolated thunderstorms. Friday night will bring west winds around 10 knots diminishing to around 5 knots after midnight. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
Northwest winds around 5 knots. Bay and inland waters smooth. A slight chance of thunderstorms. Saturday night will bring wind variable less than 5 knots. Bay and inland waters smooth.
Wind variable less than 5 knots. Bay and inland waters smooth. A slight chance of thunderstorms. Sunday night will bring northeast winds around 5 knots. Bay and inland waters smooth.