News Releases

Snapper Season Statement

News Release

Friday, June 09, 2017

Media contact: Amanda Nalley,, 850-410-4943

Red snapper photos: External Website 


We truly appreciate the input from our public and stakeholder groups as well as the thoughts from our Commissioners on this popular and economically-important species.

We are excited to be working toward the potential expansion of recreational red snapper fishing opportunities off Florida and across the Gulf. 

- Brian Yablonski, Chairman, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission 


  • Today, Commissioners held a call to discuss and hear public input on aligning the state waters red snapper season with a possible expanded federal waters season for private recreational anglers. Commissioners expressed general support for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Executive Director Nick Wiley to continue to negotiate with the U.S. Department of Commerce and the four other Gulf states for a longer federal red snapper season that would provide as many sustainable fishing opportunities as possible.
  • The current federal red snapper season for private recreational anglers in Florida federal waters was June 1-3.
  • The current red snapper season in state waters is 78 days in total and is:
    • Saturdays and Sundays starting May 6.
    • Daily opening May 27 through July 9.
    • Reopening Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays in September and October, and on Labor Day.
  • Recent discussions between the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Gulf states indicate that there may be a way to add a substantial number of additional red snapper fishing days in federal waters this summer of 2017, but Florida would have to give days to get days.
  • Gulf states, including Florida, will be required to align open days for fishing state waters with days that would be open for fishing in federal waters.
  • The FWC held a special meeting by electronic media technology at 2 p.m. EDT Friday, June 9, to discuss the Gulf red snapper season for private recreational anglers in state and federal waters.
  • These changes would apply only to recreational anglers fishing from private vessels. No changes to the commercial or recreational for-hire seasons were considered.

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