Fishing Closures

July 7th, 2010 at 4:56 pm by under FOX10 Stormtracker Weather, Jason Smith - FOX10 Outdoors

Confused by the fishing closures ? You are not alone. Each state has its own specific closure areas. The Feds have their closure too, which is by far the largest and the most restrictive.

All offshore Federal waters within 100 miles of here are closed – no fishing of any kind. The area of Federal waters begins off our beaches by 3-7 miles and extends beyond the range of most boats. Updates can be found at:

http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/

Some state waters are open, however…

Mississippi State Waters: all areas along Gulf beaches and MS Sound are closed, no fishing, period. Back bays and bayous are open. Updates can be found at:

http://www.dmr.state.ms.us/

Alabama State Waters: MS Sound and Gulf Beaches – catch and release only. Mobile Bay is fully open to fishing except for a small area right at the mouth of the bay. Updates can be found at:

http://outdooralabama.com/fishing/saltwater/DH.cfm

Florida State Waters: (Gulf Beaches) Perdido Key to Pensacola Beach – catch and release only. Everything else is fully open. Updates can be found at:

http://myfwc.com/OilSpill/index.htm

Catch and Release Trend…

Florida started this concept and all other Gulf Coast States have followed along. You can fish, but all species must be returned to the water immediately. Louisiana has extensive areas that are closed, but now allow catch and release fishing as of June 6th.

Mississippi is the only state that prohibits catch and release fishing in the “caution” areas.

”This option has been on the table for some time now and is part of our ongoing effort to be proactive as we continue to write the playbook on this event,” said Chief of Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Robert Branham.

”Many fish for the pure pleasure of catching and then releasing already. We see no reason why that activity can’t continue,” said Alabama Conservation Commissioner Barnett Lawley.

There are no reports of tainted fish in our waters. The affects of hydrocarbons on fish are still be studied. Expect more changes as we go along…

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