Recreational anglers just got some awesome news; red snapper season has reopened in the Gulf of Mexico and will end on Labor Day, Monday, September, 4.
That means an additional 39 days of red snapper fishing! That sure beats the heck out of the measly three-day federal season recreational anglers were initially given.
Unfortunately, this only includes recreational anglers and not fishing charters or commercial fishing.
The announcement comes thanks to an agreement between the Department of Commerce and the five Gulf states – Florida, Alabama, Mississipi, Louisiana and Texas. They wanted improved access to red snapper after the insanely short extended weekend we were first given.
This announcement is “is a welcome relief for the thousands of tackle shops, marinas, equipment manufacturers and other business who have suffered from decreasing public access to Gulf red snapper in recent years,” said Mike Leonard, the conservation director of the American Sportfishing Association.
“An extended federal Gulf red snapper season will have a tremendous positive economic impact on Florida’s coastal communities, which depend on our state’s $9.6 billion sportfishing industry,” said Gary Jennings, the director of ASA. “We appreciate efforts to expand access to our fisheries, and we will continue to push for improvements to federal management of recreational fishing.”
The extension consists of three-day weekends (Friday-Sunday) starting Friday, June 16 to Monday, September 4. Anglers will also be able to fish Monday and Tuesday, July 3-4 and September 4.
In order to make this deal happen, each state had to close their red snapper season Monday through Thursday, excluding holidays, up until Labor Day. Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas could get extra fishing days in state waters this fall depending on harvest estimates from the summer season.
The Department of Commerce announced this agreement between the federal government and Gulf states “is a significant step forward in building a new Federal-State partnership in managing the Gulf of Mexico red snapper stock.”
We’re just happy we have another excuse to go fishing.