Grouper are managed differently in the Gulf versus the Atlantic and in state versus federal waters.

Gulf state waters are from shore to 9 nautical miles.

Atlantic state waters are from shore to 3 nautical miles.

Updates

State Regulations

FWC is gathering public input on extending the recreational gag grouper season in state waters off Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson and Taylor counties, including the possibility of adding a September through December season, which will be discussed at the July Commission meeting in Orlando.

Have you signed up for the Gulf Reef Fish Survey yet? Learn more.


Gulf Regulations (Monroe County managed under Atlantic regulations)

(both state and federal waters unless specified)

GroupersMin. Size LimitDaily Bag LimitOpen Season
Aggregate bag limit   4 per person  
Goliath/Nassau Harvest Prohibited

Gag

Map

24” TL

2 per person with aggregate

State only: 0 fish bag limit for Charter Captain and Crew

State: June 1-Dec. 31 (excluding Franklin, Wakulla, Taylor, Jefferson counties)

April 1-June 30 in state waters off of Franklin, Wakulla, Taylor and Jefferson counties

Federal: June 1 – Dec. 31

Black 24” TL

4 per person within aggregate

State only: 0 fish bag limit for Charter Captain and Crew

State: Open year-round

Federal: Closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of 20 fathoms (map)

"The Edges" closed Jan 1 - Apr 30

Red

20" TL

2 per person within the 4 grouper aggregate

State only: 0 fish bag limit for Charter Captain and Crew

State: Open year-round

Federal: Closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of 20 fathoms (map)

"The Edges" closed Jan 1 - Apr 30

Scamp 16" TL Up to 4 per person within 4 grouper aggregate

State: Open year-round

Federal: Closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of 20 fathoms (map)

"The Edges" closed Jan 1 - Apr 30

Yellowfin

20" TL

Up to 4 per person within 4 grouper aggregate

State: Open year-round

Federal: Closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of 20 fathoms (map)

"The Edges" closed Jan 1 - Apr 30

Yellowmouth State: 20" TL Up to 4 per person within 4 grouper aggregate

State: Open year-round

Federal: Closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of 20 fathoms (map)

Rock Hind/Red Hind None

State: Up to 4 per person within the 4 grouper aggregate

 

Open year-round

Coney/Graysby None State: Up to 4 per person within the 4 grouper aggregate Open year-round
Yellowedge/Misty None

Up to 4 per person within 4 grouper aggregate

Open year-round

Warsaw/Speckled Hind None

1 of each per vessel within 4 grouper aggregate

Open year-round

Snowy None

Up to 4 per person within 4 grouper aggregate

Open year-round

Reef fish as Bait Use prohibited

*Note: Gear rules require circle hooks and dehooking tools in Gulf waters reef fish fisheries.


Atlantic Regulations (Including all state waters of Monroe County)

(both state and federal waters unless specified)

GroupersMin. Size LimitDaily Bag LimitOpen Season
Aggregate bag limit   3 per person  
Goliath/Nassau Harvest prohibited

Gag

Map

24” TL 1 Gag or Black within the 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Black 24” TL 1 Gag or Black within the 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Red 20" TL

Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate

Open May 1-Dec. 31

Scamp 20" TL Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Yellowfin 20" TL Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Yellowmouth 20" TL Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Rock Hind/Red Hind None Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Coney/Graysby None Up to 3 per personwithin 3 grouper aggregate Open May 1-Dec. 31
Yellowedge/Misty None Up to 3 per person within 3 grouper aggregate  
Warsaw/Speckled Hind

State: None

Federal: Harvest prohibited

State: 1 per vessel per day of each species

Federal: Harvest prohibited

State: Open year-round

Federal: Harvest prohibited

Snowy None State: 1 per person within the 3 grouper aggregate;
Federal: 1 per vessel per day within the 3 grouper aggregate

State: Open year-round

Federal: Open May 1 – Aug. 31

Reef fish as bait   must have heads and fins intact through landing  

20-Fathom Map Adobe PDF

Click map or link above for a larger PDF.

Several species of Gulf grouper (red, black, scamp, yellowfin and yellowmouth) are closed Feb. 1-March 31 seaward of the 20-fathom break. Recreational anglers are encouraged to use electronic charting equipment to plot the 20-fathom break by entering the established coordinates listed on the map below into a route.

Monroe County: Several species of Atlantic grouper (red, black, yellowfin, yellowmouth, scamp, rock hind, red hind, coney, graysby and tiger) are closed Jan. 1 - April 30 in all state and federal waters (tiger are not included in the federal closure) of the Atlantic including all state waters off Monroe County (Atlantic and Gulf sides). During this closure, anglers can harvest grouper in open federal waters of the Gulf and return to port in Monroe County by traveling through closed state waters of the Atlantic as long as the vessel proceeds directly to port without stopping to fish.

shallow-water-grouper-map.jpg


Gag Grouper Management Zones Adobe PDF

Click map or link above for a larger PDF.

Gag-grouper-regs-map.jpg

GPS Boundaries: Franklin-Taylor Regional Gag Season

Location

Longitude

Latitude

Indian Pass

85 degrees 13.76 minutes west

29 degrees 40.71 minutes north

Offshore Indian Pass

85 degrees 13.71 minutes west

29 degrees 30.32 minutes north

Offshore Steinhatchee

83 degrees 34.52 minutes west

29 degrees 31.62 minutes north

Steinhatchee River

83 degrees 24.53 minutes west

29 degrees 40.03 minutes north

Gulf Gag Management Zone Details

Gag4CountyMap.jpg

Anglers targeting gag grouper in state waters in Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson and Taylor counties can keep their bag limit from April 1 through June 30. This opening also includes all waters of the Steinhatchee River, including those in Dixie County, and all waters of Apalachicola Bay and Indian Pass, including those in Gulf County. The shaded areas represent what will be open to recreational gag grouper harvest between April 1 and June 30.

Gag4CountyWest.jpg

Pictured above is the western boundary of the April 1-June 30 gag grouper recreational harvest.

Gag4CountyEast.jpg

Pictured above is the eastern boundary of the April 1-June 30 gag grouper recreational harvest season.


Additional Grouper Resources

Grouper biology information:



FWC Facts:
Adult Florida bass usually eat crayfish and other fish, but on rare occasions eat snakes and birds.

Learn More at AskFWC