Tiger shark, hammerhead protections start Jan. 1
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Media contact: Amanda Nalley, 850-410-4943
The recreational and commercial harvest of tiger sharks and
smooth, scalloped and great hammerhead sharks will be prohibited in
Florida state waters beginning Jan. 1.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)
approved the management change at its Nov. 16 Commission meeting in
an effort to further protect these top predators.
The new measures also prohibit the possession, sale and exchange
of tiger sharks and great, scalloped and smooth hammerhead sharks
harvested from state waters. These sharks can still be caught and
released in state waters and can be taken in adjacent federal
waters. Prohibited species that die while on the line after
being caught in state waters should be returned to the water
The FWC is also working on an educational campaign highlighting
fishing and handling techniques that increase the survival rate of
sharks that are caught and released while ensuring the safety of
the anglers targeting them. These techniques include:
- Use tackle heavy enough to land a fish quickly, reducing
- Release the fish while it is in the water when possible.
- Use a de-hooking device to remove hooks safely.
- Use non-stainless steel hooks that can dissolve if they remain
in a fish.
- Use non-offset circle hooks to avoid gut-hooking a fish.
Florida waters are considered essential habitat for these and
other species of shark, especially juveniles and pregnant
Shark fishing has been strictly regulated in Florida since 1992,
with a one-shark-per-person, two-sharks-per-vessel daily bag limit
for all recreational and commercial harvesters and a ban on shark
finning. Roughly two-dozen overfished, vulnerable or rare shark
species are catch-and-release only in Florida waters.
information on shark fishing, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click
on "Saltwater Fishing" and either "Recreational Regulations" or