Marine Life Florida Fishing Regulations

Marine Life

Marine Life

UPDATE: BLUE HERON BRIDGE

All collection of Marine Life (aquarium species) at the Blue Heron Bridge dive site in Palm Beach County is prohibited (see below for species that are considered to be Marine Life). Prohibitions will not apply to other fishing activities, such as hook-and-line fishing.

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Marine life Collage

Requirements for Recreational Marine Life Harvest

  • Recreational saltwater fishing license
  • Organisms must be landed and kept alive
  • A continuously circulating live well, aeration or oxygenation system of adequate size to maintain these organisms in a healthy condition
  • State regulations for marine life apply in federal waters

Allowable Gear:

  • Hand collection
  • Hand held net: a landing or dip net. A portion of the bag may be constructed of clear plastic material rather than mesh.
  • Drop net: a small, usually circular net with weights attached along the outer edge and a single float in the center, used by a diver to enclose and concentrate tropical fish.
  • Barrier net (fence net): a seine used beneath the surface of the water by a diver to enclose and concentrate tropical fish. The net may be made of nylon or monofilament.
  • Slurp gun: a self-contained, handheld device that captures tropical fish by rapidly drawing seawater containing such fish into a closed chamber.
  • Use of quinaldine is prohibited.
  • Use of power tools for harvest of octocorals is prohibited
  • Some organisms have additional gear limitations.  See below for more details.

Bag Limit: 20 organisms per person per day; only 5 of any one species allowed within the 20-organism bag limit unless otherwise noted. See charts below for more details.

Possession Limit: 2-day possession limit, 40 total organisms, no more than 10 of any one species allowed.

Allowable substrate: see species specifications in tables.

Blue Heron BoundryClosed areas: Various closed areas exist. See regulations for Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park, national wildlife refuges and Florida’s State Parks before collecting in these areas. NEW: The Blue Heron Bridge dive site is closed to marine life harvest (see image at right for boundaries.)

Sale of recreationally caught marine life organisms is prohibited.

† Some organisms have additional gear limitations.  See charts below for more details.

Additional rules apply to the collection of shells containing live organisms in Lee and Manatee counties.

Can I feed sharks and other fish?

*Unless otherwise noted, combined bag limit of 20 marine life fish and invertebrates per person per day, only 5 of any one species allowed. A 2-day possession limit also applies (40 total organisms, only 10 of any one species).

**Such as groupers, snappers, seabass and amberjacks. Must abide by regulations for these species in Rule 68B-14 F.A.C.

*Unless otherwise noted, combined bag limit of 20 marine life fish and invertebrates per person per day, only 5 of any one species allowed.   A 2-day possession limit also applies (40 total organisms, only 10 of any one species).

Marine Life – Plants

Species

Algae, Coralline Red (Family Corallinaceae)

Caulerpa (Family Caulerpaceae)

Halimeda/Mermaid’s Fan/Mermaid’s Shaving Brush (Family Udoteaceae)

Remarks

One gallon of tropical ornamental marine plants per day in any combination; 2 gallon maximum possession limit

Recreational collection of up to 100 pounds or 2 organisms per person per day (whichever is greater) of unregulated species is permitted with a recreational saltwater fishing license. To collect greater quantities of unregulated species, a saltwater products license is required.

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