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Spotted Seatrout

Update

Spotted seatrout is catch-and-release only in state or federal waters from Pasco County south through Gordon Pass in Collier County through May 31, 2021. STARTING JUNE 1, 2021 Normal regulations will resume for spotted seatrout in all state waters in Pasco County and Tampa Bay including all state waters north of State Road 64 in Manatee County plus the Braden River but not including Palma Sola Bay. In waters south of State Road 64 in Manatee County including Palma Sola Bay through Gordon Pass in Collier County spotted seatrout commercial harvest will resume with a three-fish bag and six-fish vessel limits.

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Spotted Seatrout

Spotted Seatrout Management Zones

Regulations extend into federal waters.

  • Western Panhandle: Escambia County through the portions of Gulf County west of longitude 85 degrees, 13.76 minutes but NOT including Indian Pass/Indian Lagoon.
  • Big Bend: Remaining portion of Gulf County plus Indian Lagoon, and Franklin County through Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line.
  • South: Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line through Broward County.
  • Central East: Palm Beach through Volusia counties.
  • Northeast: Flagler through Nassau counties.

Western Panhandle-Big Bend Spotted Seatrout Management Zone Boundary

Regulations

Area

Escambia County through the portions of Gulf County west of longitude 85 degrees, 13.76 minutes but NOT including Indian Pass/Indian Lagoon.

Limits

Slot limit: 15-24 inches

Daily harvest limit:

50 fish per person per day or per vessel, whichever is less 

Commercial vessel limit of 100 when two or more licensed fishermen are aboard

Seasons

Open Season: June 1-Oct. 31

*NOTE: Sale and possession of seatrout inventory is allowed for 30 days after the season closes. After 30 days following a regional closure, no spotted seatrout may be possessed in a closed region.

Area

Remaining portion of Gulf County plus Indian Lagoon, and Franklin County through Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line.

 

Limits

Slot limit: 15-24 inches

Daily harvest limit:

50 fish per person per day or per vessel, whichever is less 

Commercial vessel limit of 100 when two or more licensed fishermen are aboard

South of State Road 64 in Manatee County (including Palma Sola Bay but not including the Braden River or any tributaries of the Manatee River) through Gordon Pass in Collier County

  • Spotted seatrout harvest will resume June 1, 2021, with a three-fish bag limit and a six-fish vessel limit. 

Seasons and other regulations

Open Season: June 1-Oct. 31

*NOTE: Sale and possession of seatrout inventory is allowed for 30 days after the season closes. After 30 days following a regional closure, no spotted seatrout may be possessed in a closed region.

SW Florida: 

Pasco County line south through State Road 64 in Manatee County (including the Braden River and Pinellas County), remains catch-and-release through May 31, 2021.

South of State Road 64 in Manatee County (including Palma Sola Bay but not including the Braden River or any tributaries of the Manatee River) through Gordon Pass in Collier County

  • Spotted seatrout harvest will resume June 1, 2021, with a three-fish daily bag limit and a six-fish vessel limit.

Area

Fred Howard Park Causeway in Pinellas County near the Pasco County line through Broward County.

NOTE: Spotted seatrout is catch-and-release in all waters from the Hernando/Pasco county line south through Gordon Pass in Collier County through May 31, 2021.

Limits

Slot limit: 15-24 inches

Daily harvest limit:

50 fish per person per day or per vessel, whichever is less 

Commercial vessel limit of 100 when two or more licensed fishermen are aboard

South of State Road 64 in Manatee County (including Palma Sola Bay but not including the Braden River or any tributaries of the Manatee River) through Gordon Pass in Collier County

  • Spotted seatrout harvest will resume June 1, 2021, with a three-fish bag limit and a six-fish vessel limit. 

Seasons

Open Season: June 1-Oct. 31

*NOTE: Sale and possession of seatrout inventory is allowed for 30 days after the season closes. After 30 days following a regional closure, no spotted seatrout may be possessed in a closed region.

SW Florida: 

Pasco County line south through State Road 64 in Manatee County (including the Braden River and Pinellas County), remains catch-and-release through May 31, 2021.

South of State Road 64 in Manatee County (including Palma Sola Bay but not including the Braden River or any tributaries of the Manatee River) through Gordon Pass in Collier County

  • Spotted seatrout harvest will resume June 1, 2021, with a three-fish daily bag limit and a six-fish vessel limit.

Area

Palm Beach through Volusia counties.

Limits

Slot limit: 15-24 inches

Daily harvest limit:

50 fish per person per day or per vessel, whichever is less 

Commercial vessel limit of 100 when two or more licensed fishermen are aboard

Seasons

Open Season: May 1-Sept. 30

*NOTE: Sale and possession of seatrout inventory is allowed for 30 days after the season closes. After 30 days following a regional closure, no spotted seatrout may be possessed in a closed region.

Area

Flagler through Nassau counties.

Limits

Slot limit: 15-24 inches

Daily harvest limit:

50 fish per person per day or per vessel, whichever is less 

Commercial vessel limit of 100 when two or more licensed fishermen are aboard

Seasons

Open Season: June 1-Nov. 30

*NOTE: Sale and possession of seatrout inventory is allowed for 30 days after the season closes. After 30 days following a regional closure, no spotted seatrout may be possessed in a closed region.

License Requirements:

Saltwater Product License (SPL), Restricted Species Endorsement (RS)

Gear Requirements:

hook and line, cast net


Image Credit: Diane Rome Peebles