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Regulation update

The 2022 recreational blueline tilefish season for Atlantic state waters will be from May 1 through July 25, 2022 (closing July 26, 2022). FWC has approved this modified recreational season to be consistent with the season recently announced by NOAA Fisheries that is intended to prevent overfishing during the 2022 fishing season.

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Gulf State

Minimum Size Limit: None

Daily Bag Limit: 100 pounds or 2 per person, whichever is greater

Atlantic State

Minimum Size Limit: None

Daily Bag Limit: 1 per person within the 3 grouper aggregate

Federal - Gulf and Atlantic

Minimum Size Limit: None

Daily Bag Limit:

  • Gulf: Included in the 20 reef fish aggregate
  • Atlantic: 1 per person, within 3 grouper/tilefish aggregate

Atlantic federal closure: Atlantic waters off Florida are closed to harvest Sept. 20-Dec. 31, 2021.

Gulf State

Minimum Size Limit: None

Daily Bag Limit: 100 pounds or 2 per person, whichever is greater

Atlantic State

Minimum Size Limit: None 

Daily Bag Limit: 3 blueline tilefish within the three-fish aggregate bag limit for grouper and tilefish in Atlantic state waters.

2022 Season: Open May 1 through July 25.

Federal - Gulf and Atlantic

Minimum Size Limit: None

Daily Bag Limit: 

  • Gulf: Included in 20 reef fish aggregate
  • Atlantic: 3 per person. 2022 season open May 1 through July 25.
Golden tilefish

Gear Requirements

  • Reef fish gear requirements apply
  • In the Atlantic reef fish fishery, gear rules require dehooking tools, and as of Jan. 1, 2021, non-stainless steel hooks in all state waters, and non-offset circle hooks N. of 28 ° N. latitude.

Description

Tilefish inhabit the outer continental shelf and upper continental slope along the entire east coast of the United States and the Gulf of Mexico south to Venezuela. They are found in waters from 250-1,500 feet deep, where bottom temperatures range from 49° to 58° F. Individuals live in cone-shaped burrows, and concentrate in small groups or pods. Females are smaller than males, although whether or not the species displays hermaphrodism is unknown. Tilefish feed during the day on the bottom on crustaceans, clams, snails, worms, anemones and sea cucumbers.

Image courtesy of Duane Raver