Possession limit

flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

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Replies

  • XafXaf Posts: 947 Officer

    This question or a version of it comes up quite a bit. The information below, taken from past posts on this issue, is somewhat repetitive but I believe it answers your question, especially the FWC letter. I will see if I can find the FWC rules that apply. The way I interpret the information below you can only transport (possess) a one day limit (salt water) or 2 day limit (fresh water) unless the fish is processed and frozen or you fall under the exception for head boats or charter boats.

    Every search I have done on "Possession Limits" states that it is the total number of fish or game that can be kept while, in the field, on or near the water, or in transit (from the field/water to your permanent residence). In most cases they also state that fish or game stored at your permanent residence for consumption do not count in possession limits.

    According to FWC: Possession
    Overview
    In general, the daily bag limits set by Commission rule for saltwater fishing are for a calendar day (24-hour period from midnight to midnight). These limits are also possession limits. Therefore, it is illegal to possess more than one day's bag limit "while in, on or above the waters of the State or on any dock, pier, bridge, beach or other fishing site adjacent to such waters" with regard to most species.
    Once you have caught and possess the bag limit for a species, you may not harvest any more of that species until the next 24-hour period. Thus it is illegal to take the catch to shore and then return to the sea to harvest another daily bag limit during the same calendar day.
    Exception
    There is an exception that allows individuals to possess double the daily bag limit certain fish only when fishing from a head boat or charter boat on a trip that spans more than 24 hours and:
     The vessel has a sleeping berth for each passenger aboard the vessel;
     Each passenger possesses a receipt issued on behalf of the vessel that verifies the length of the trip.

    I hope that Jack Hexter, Sochoppy and Roc N Rol do not mind my reposting an FWC response to a similar question in another thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roc N Rol
    “Here is a letter from FWC that Sopchoppy posted in another thread that pertains to this subject.

    _Thank you for contacting the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The response to your concerns appears below.

    Subject
    Transporting cleaned and frozen fish
    Discussion Thread
    Response (DLE-JF) 04/22/2010 08:56 AM
    In general, the daily bag limits set by commission rule for saltwater fishing are for a calendar day (24 hour period from midnight to midnight). These limits are also possession limits. Therefore, it is illegal to possess more than one day’s bag limit "while in, on, or above the waters of the State or on any dock, pier, bridge, beach or other fishing site adjacent to such waters" with regard to most species.

    In Florida's fresh waters, a bag or creel limit is the number of fish an angler can harvest (keep) per day, with a two-day possession limit at a base camp, house boat, or when transporting prior to freezing.

    Things to keep in mind are: Once the fish are processed and placed in a freezer (not a cooler) at a residence (e.g., their permanent home, a mobile home or motel catering to anglers), they become a food product. From that point on there is no longer a limit on them. So for instance, if someone is fishing all winter and keeps processing their catch and adding fish to their freezer, then puts them on ice to transport someplace else, they can exceed the possession limit. Hopefully this clarifies the confusion you had about transporting. If you have further questions, please contact the Division of Freshwater Fisheries Management at 850-488-0331 or the Division of Marine Fisheries Management at 850-487-0554.

    Thank you,
    FWC Customer Service”_

  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    Thank you. So by this your saying for instance. I go on vacation for a week at the beach to fish. I can only bring back to my home a two day limit of the same species of fish no matter if they are cleaned or frozen. This is what don't make sense. I will have to stop fishing for that species after day two. Assuming I catch a limit the first two days.

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  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    One more thing that has come up. So you can't transport those frozen fish from your home to a location like a fish fry (more than a two day limit)? Everyone attending will have to bring there own fish-legally? That's crazy.

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  • snookaffinitysnookaffinity Naples, FLPosts: 961 Officer

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    One more thing that has come up. So you can't transport those frozen fish from your home to a location like a fish fry (more than a two day limit)? Everyone attending will have to bring there own fish-legally? That's crazy.

    I think you need to read the above posts more carefully.

    "It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt." - Mark Twain
  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    So for instance, if someone is fishing all winter and keeps processing their catch and adding fish to their freezer, then puts them on ice to transport someplace else, they can **exceed the possession limit. **

    What's different?

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  • XafXaf Posts: 947 Officer

    Flats, I think you may read my post wrong. I'll give you my opinion of what the letter means but that doesn't mean it's right. If anyone else wants to chime in, please do.

    Scenario # 1- You go to the beach for a week camping in a tent with only a cooler and ice. My interpretation is that you can only possess 1 days bag limit, assuming that the beach is near salt water. ( "it is illegal to possess more than one day’s bag limit "while in, on, or above the waters of the State or on any dock, pier, bridge, beach or other fishing site adjacent to such waters"

    Scenario # 2 - You go to the beach for a week and stay at a near by motel that has a freezer. Once you clean the fish and put them in the freezer they become a food product and you can have as many as you want. "Once the fish are processed and placed in a freezer (not a cooler) at a residence (e.g., their permanent home, a mobile home or motel catering to anglers), they become a food product. From that point on there is no longer a limit on them." Although I think you would be shaky ground if it was the opening week of a season such as grouper, red fish, snook and you had 2 or 3 times a seven day bag limit.

    Scenario # 3 - A friend is having a fish fry and asks if you have any fish you can bring. You say, " sure I have a whole freezer full." You can legally put them in a cooler and transport the fish to the location of the fish fry. Same reasoning as scenario # 2, "Once the fish are processed and placed in a freezer (not a cooler) at a residence (e.g., their permanent home, a mobile home or motel catering to anglers), they become a food product. From that point on there is no longer a limit on them." Just the same as someone who has a freezer full of fish and they are traveling back up north or anywhere for that matter.

    Scenario # 4 - Let's say you're in the keys for a week and a friend calls you and say's he's having a fish fry and asks if you have any fish that you could bring. You say sure The fish fry is only a day or two after you will get home. So you catch 3 or 4 days bag limit and rather then freezing them you clean them and keep them on ice in a cooler. My interpretation is that you would be in violation because they have not been frozen and are therefore not considered a food product yet.

    There are a lot of different scenario's that could come up. What if you and 2 other guys (each driving in separate vehicles) go fishing and each catches his limit . You put them all in one cooler in your car to clean and divide up when you get home. You would technically be in violation of the law. Would you get a ticket if you and the other guys explained the situation? I wouldn't think so by I don't know. I'm sure there have been times when I have come home from the Keys and technically have been in violation of the possession limits but luckily it has never been an issue.

  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    Thanks for the explanation. it sure would help if the regs were defined as such there is no wrong interpretation. Maybe it needs to be discussed and added to the regs in simpler form.

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  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    I found the correct answer I was looking for....

    Rule 68B-37, F.A.C. provides that the daily bag limit and individual possession limits for spotted seatrout as follows: Southeast and Southwest regions is 4 fish, Northwest region is 5 fish, and Northeast region is 6 fish. Because each of the four spotted seatrout regions is defined as “all Florida Waters” between specifically defined boundaries, the possession limit for spotted seatrout applies only while you are on the water.

    Once the fish have been landed, there is no possession limit, so an individual who fishes multiple days can accumulate (off the water) and possess spotted seatrout in excess of the daily bag limit. Recreationally caught spotted seatrout that were legally harvested and landed, can be given to a client by a charter captain as long as the charter captain receives no compensation (monetary or other) for the fish.

    So the trout rules have been revised so there is no possession limit? You can have as many as you like in your freezer as long as each batch was caught on separate days? Yes

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  • XafXaf Posts: 947 Officer

    Looks like you are good to go. I should have pointed out that the letter addresses "most species". The way I read the Rule you posted, the possession limit for spotted sea trout only applies while on the water. Since there is no possession limit one they have been landed, it seems to me that you could have as many as you want anywhere you are on land, whether they are processed and frozen or not.

    There are so many differences in Florida's Fishing Rules, I don't see how they can ever enforce any of them. Not that I'm advocating it, but it seems to me a good lawyer could make an argument that would confuse even a judge and the FWC.

  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    Yes he said some other species this will not apply in certain areas. Redfish and Snook are two.

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  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 991 Officer

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

    Its pretty simple. Its a possession limit. You can only have in your possession one days limit of whole unprocessed fish. you are not allowed to process fish that has a size limit out on the water as they cant be measured once processed. I get that you are out camping and fishing for three days and want to bring home a three day limit on the third day, but you cant. You have to think like a game warden. I run into you at the ramp and you have a three day limit in your ice chest? How do I know you caught them over a three day period. I cant prove that and neither can you. You would be in violation and ticketed.

  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

    Its pretty simple. Its a possession limit. You can only have in your possession one days limit of whole unprocessed fish. you are not allowed to process fish that has a size limit out on the water as they cant be measured once processed. I get that you are out camping and fishing for three days and want to bring home a three day limit on the third day, but you cant. You have to think like a game warden. I run into you at the ramp and you have a three day limit in your ice chest? How do I know you caught them over a three day period. I cant prove that and neither can you. You would be in violation and ticketed.

    No one said anything about a possession limit on water. I know you can't possess more than a one man limit on water or near water. This discussion was about getting a three day limit home after you've stayed overnight. That is keeping your previous day's catch at your camp then going home. There is no possession limit away from water.

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  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 991 Officer

    @flatsbroke22 said:

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

    Its pretty simple. Its a possession limit. You can only have in your possession one days limit of whole unprocessed fish. you are not allowed to process fish that has a size limit out on the water as they cant be measured once processed. I get that you are out camping and fishing for three days and want to bring home a three day limit on the third day, but you cant. You have to think like a game warden. I run into you at the ramp and you have a three day limit in your ice chest? How do I know you caught them over a three day period. I cant prove that and neither can you. You would be in violation and ticketed.

    No one said anything about a possession limit on water. I know you can't possess more than a one man limit on water or near water. This discussion was about getting a three day limit home after you've stayed overnight. That is keeping your previous day's catch at your camp then going home. There is no possession limit away from water.

    On the way back to land you WILL be in possession of over the limit. Its up to the officer to decide. What makes you think once you step foot on the land you cant be busted?

  • BarrellBarrell Posts: 991 Officer

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

    Its pretty simple. Its a possession limit. You can only have in your possession one days limit of whole unprocessed fish. you are not allowed to process fish that has a size limit out on the water as they cant be measured once processed. I get that you are out camping and fishing for three days and want to bring home a three day limit on the third day, but you cant. You have to think like a game warden. I run into you at the ramp and you have a three day limit in your ice chest? How do I know you caught them over a three day period. I cant prove that and neither can you. You would be in violation and ticketed.

    No one said anything about a possession limit on water. I know you can't possess more than a one man limit on water or near water. This discussion was about getting a three day limit home after you've stayed overnight. That is keeping your previous day's catch at your camp then going home. There is no possession limit away from water.

    On the way back to land you WILL be in possession of over the limit. Its up to the officer to decide. What makes you think once you step foot on the land you cant be busted? I was a marine game warden for 18 years . I pulled over many many many vehicles on land and busted them for having over the limit.

  • surfmansurfman WC FLPosts: 3,857 Captain

    'Nor can you go out in the morning and catch a limit, land them and, then go out again in the afternoon and catch another limit, legally or ethically that is.

    Tight Lines, Steve
    My posts are my opinion only.
  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    @Barrell said:

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:

    @Barrell said:

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    I've been told that to legally transport a three days limit of fish(like on a three day fishing trip at a fish camp) you need to clean at least one limit. Cause then those clean fish are now considered food and do not count towards any limit. I know you can legally be in possession of a two day limit on land but what about getting that three day limit home? Like to hear the answer but also see it in writing somewhere cause I can't find where this applies on the FWC site.

    Its pretty simple. Its a possession limit. You can only have in your possession one days limit of whole unprocessed fish. you are not allowed to process fish that has a size limit out on the water as they cant be measured once processed. I get that you are out camping and fishing for three days and want to bring home a three day limit on the third day, but you cant. You have to think like a game warden. I run into you at the ramp and you have a three day limit in your ice chest? How do I know you caught them over a three day period. I cant prove that and neither can you. You would be in violation and ticketed.

    No one said anything about a possession limit on water. I know you can't possess more than a one man limit on water or near water. This discussion was about getting a three day limit home after you've stayed overnight. That is keeping your previous day's catch at your camp then going home. There is no possession limit away from water.

    On the way back to land you WILL be in possession of over the limit. Its up to the officer to decide. What makes you think once you step foot on the land you cant be busted? I was a marine game warden for 18 years . I pulled over many many many vehicles on land and busted them for having over the limit.

    Your totally misunderstanding this. Let me put it simple for you. Get the boat out of your head! Go fish and catch a limit. Put fish in cooler and leave at camp. Repeat the next two days. Now the question was getting all those fish home. No limit on how many fish you can possess on the way home.

    No one said anything about double dipping either.

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  • DigitalchaosDigitalchaos Posts: 25 Greenhorn

    Yes there is a limit unless the fish have been processed and frozen making them a food product then amy amount over 1 days limit would be a violation. Any legal questions such as this that can cause you to be fined or prosecuted . simply
    email fwc they will give you the correct responce

  • Rich MRich M Posts: 923 Officer
    edited February 8 #19

    "Yes there is a limit unless the fish have been processed and frozen making them a food product then any amount over 1 days limit would be a violation."

    What if he has dry ice in a cooler and freezes the fish? I'm going on a fishing trip that has a ferry and drops you off for a couple days, then ferries you back. Have receipts but no place to freeze fish unless I bring dry ice - in all seriousness, it would be a lot lighter to bring back fillets.

    Is there anyone specific at FWC to contact?

  • DigitalchaosDigitalchaos Posts: 25 Greenhorn

    flfwc.mycusthelp.com. just go to contact us and fill out the question

  • Rich MRich M Posts: 923 Officer
    edited February 9 #21

    That's an imposing website - not as simple as just asking a question from what I see.

  • DigitalchaosDigitalchaos Posts: 25 Greenhorn

    amanda.nalley@myfwc.com try emailing her directly hopefully this helps

  • stc1993stc1993 Albany, GA Carrabelle, FLPosts: 4,475 Captain

    I emailed them once and asked a question never got an answer.

  • flatsbroke22flatsbroke22 Posts: 399 Deckhand

    @Digitalchaos said:
    Yes there is a limit unless the fish have been processed and frozen making them a food product then amy amount over 1 days limit would be a violation. Any legal questions such as this that can cause you to be fined or prosecuted . simply
    email fwc they will give you the correct responce

    No there isn't! READ the statute above. That didn't come out of my head. That's the written law!

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  • dragon baitdragon bait Posts: 5,550 Admiral
    edited February 13 #25

    @flatsbroke22 said:
    So for instance, if someone is fishing all winter and keeps processing their catch and adding fish to their freezer, then puts them on ice to transport someplace else, they can **exceed the possession limit. **

    What's different?

    Can you go to Publix and buy more than 2 days of fish?
    once it is cleaned and packaged it no longer considered fish, it is food,( in car not on the water)

  • DigitalchaosDigitalchaos Posts: 25 Greenhorn

    I would approach that rule cautiously no rrason to end up in court to prove if you are right ever troed to argue the law with fwc . even if you win still costs you

  • DigitalchaosDigitalchaos Posts: 25 Greenhorn

    Who want a ticket over a few fish . the fines would cover a lot of trips

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