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Spotted seatrout management: Share your input online or at Destin workshop

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Learn about the current status of the seatrout fishery, staff’s proposal for future management and share your input by attending one of these workshops. 

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The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) needs your input on spotted seatrout management.

The FWC is hosting several spotted seatrout in-person public workshops around the state including one in Destin on July 29,

Learn about the current status of the seatrout fishery, staff’s proposal for future management and share your input by attending one of these workshops. 

  • Eye M.D. of Niceville
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Workshops will begin at 6 p.m. local time:

  • July 29: Destin, Destin Community Center, 101 Stahlman Ave.
  • July 31: Steinhatchee, Steinhatchee Community Center, 1013 Riverside Drive.
  • Aug. 6: Naples, Collier County Facilities Management, Training Room, 3335 Tamiami Trail E.
  • Aug 7: Melbourne, Brevard County Government Center, Florida Room, 2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way.

Potential changes on which staff will be gathering input include:

  • Splitting the northwest spotted seatrout management zone into two separate zones including the Western Panhandle (Escambia through Gulf counties) and the Big Bend (Franklin County through Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line).
  • Moving the southern-most boundary between management zones to create the newly-renamed South Florida (Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line through Broward County) and Central East Coast (Palm Beach through Volusia counties) zones.
  • Eye M.D. of Niceville
  • Reducing bag limits.
    • Western Panhandle: 5 to 3 fish.
    • Big Bend: 5 to 4 fish.
    • South Florida: 4 to 3 fish.
    • Central East Coast: 4 to 2 fish.
    • Northeast: 6 to 5 fish.
  • Changing the current recreational and commercial slot limits to 15 to 19 inches.
    • Current recreational slot limit is 15 to 20 inches (with one over 20 inches allowed).
    • Current commercial slot limit is 15 to 24 inches.
  • Prohibiting all harvest of spotted seatrout 19 inches and larger.
  • Prohibiting captain and crew from keeping a personal bag limit on a for-hire trip.
  • Re-establishing the February closure in Western Panhandle.
spotted seatrout bag limit zones

The FWC is considering reducing spotted seatrout bag limits as follows: Western Panhandle: 5 to 3 fish; Big Bend: 5 to 4 fish; South Florida: 4 to 3 fish; Central East Coast: 4 to 2 fish; and Northeast: 6 to 5 fish.

If you can’t attend an in-person workshop, provide online comments at MyFWC.com/SaltwaterComments.

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