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Red Snapper... State vs Federal

Reef BanditReef Bandit Posts: 1,029 Officer
I know that when groupers are closed in Monroe County, you can still harvest them if they are caught in Gulf Federal waters providing you do not stop in state waters and return to the dock. Now, when the 11 day season ends, it is my understanding that we can still harvest them in STATE waters. Here's my question. If I catch the Red Snappers in State waters but have to travel through Federal waters to get back to Key West, does the same logic apply? Running back from the Tortugas, I would be farther than 9 miles from the nearest island( East Key) thus "Federal" until I am within the 9 miles from the Marquesas, so that 12 mile void would technically in Federal waters.

Thank you in advance for the clarification.

Replies

  • Docked WagesDocked Wages Posts: 2,923 Admin
    I think that you are OK as long as you dont stop to fish. My understanding is that you can transit through State / Federal waters with opposing bag limits as long as you do not conduct fishing in the opposing waters.
    Mark P. Wilson
    Marine Surveyor, SAMS-SA, ABYC
    Wilson Yacht Survey, Inc




  • Reef BanditReef Bandit Posts: 1,029 Officer
    I think you're right but I want something in writing so that if I'm pulled over I can say "See, I checked and it's legal".
  • testerman28testerman28 Posts: 1,329 Officer
    Reef .. great question.. LEO's looking at this post.. Please find some way for me and my friends to be able to go catch a red snapper again without penalties and political craziness.. Thanks in advance

    i know it's not easy making rules but we have a ton of them...
  • NOAA-EnforcementNOAA-Enforcement Posts: 202 Moderator
    I know that when groupers are closed in Monroe County, you can still harvest them if they are caught in Gulf Federal waters providing you do not stop in state waters and return to the dock. Now, when the 11 day season ends, it is my understanding that we can still harvest them in STATE waters. Here's my question. If I catch the Red Snappers in State waters but have to travel through Federal waters to get back to Key West, does the same logic apply? Running back from the Tortugas, I would be farther than 9 miles from the nearest island( East Key) thus "Federal" until I am within the 9 miles from the Marquesas, so that 12 mile void would technically in Federal waters.

    Thank you in advance for the clarification.


    Federal Regulations are based on "possession". If you get checked in federal waters with closed season fish, it is a violation (considered you caught them in federal waters). Even if you are just transiting.
    My purpose on this site is to help everyone understand Federal Fishery Regulations and to provide information. Working with the Florida Sportsman is a collateral (volunteer) duty I asked for and enjoy; I will only give you an answer that I’m willing to put my name on and stand behind. Sometimes that means checking with other agents/offices in the area of concern.
    Please Stay Safe And Have A Wonderful Day.
    Special Agent Allan Coker
    NOAA's Office For Fishery Law Enforcement
  • Reef BanditReef Bandit Posts: 1,029 Officer
    This is EXACTLY why I asked. Even though it's the opinion of most of us that this was legal, according to Coker, it is not. While I don't agree with it, I won't catch them in State waters and transport them through Federal.

    Thank you Coker for your clarification. While I don't like your findings, I don't believe in shooting the messenger.

    Hammer
  • Ron@.38 Special[email protected] Special Posts: 6,934 Admiral
    Ain't NOAA just great?

    BTW, that is a LEO'[s interpretation, not Legal Dept interpretation unless Cocker checked with Legal on this one.
  • Reel MullarkeyReel Mullarkey Posts: 1,873 Captain
    You'll be screwed if you get stopped and fine if you don't.:kick
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  • Reef BanditReef Bandit Posts: 1,029 Officer
    Ain't NOAA just great?

    BTW, that is a LEO'[s interpretation, not Legal Dept interpretation unless Cocker checked with Legal on this one.

    Maybe so BUT, it's not worth it to me anymore. How does that song go..... "I fought the Law and the Law Won...."
  • NOAA-EnforcementNOAA-Enforcement Posts: 202 Moderator
    This is EXACTLY why I asked. Even though it's the opinion of most of us that this was legal, according to Coker, it is not. While I don't agree with it, I won't catch them in State waters and transport them through Federal.

    Thank you Coker for your clarification. While I don't like your findings, I don't believe in shooting the messenger.

    Hammer

    Thanks
    My purpose on this site is to help everyone understand Federal Fishery Regulations and to provide information. Working with the Florida Sportsman is a collateral (volunteer) duty I asked for and enjoy; I will only give you an answer that I’m willing to put my name on and stand behind. Sometimes that means checking with other agents/offices in the area of concern.
    Please Stay Safe And Have A Wonderful Day.
    Special Agent Allan Coker
    NOAA's Office For Fishery Law Enforcement
  • Docked WagesDocked Wages Posts: 2,923 Admin
    Federal Regulations are based on "possession". If you get checked in federal waters with closed season fish, it is a violation (considered you caught them in federal waters). Even if you are just transiting.

    For discussion purposes lets expand this senario.

    What if....

    I go to the Bahamas, check in and go catch my bahamian limit of bottom fish that includes grouper. I leave to come home to Florida. I am transiting through federal waters and state waters to my home port during closed season on grouper. I get stopped and I show them my bahamian grouper plus my bahamain customs fishing permit.

    Do I need a Florida State fishing license for transit or possession?

    Am I legal to bring these fish back as long as I am within the bahamian limits and I am not fishing in Federal or state waters?

    My understanding is that I am legal to bring back a Bahamian bag limit and that if i have a state fishing license to transit the fish through state waters my Bahamian bag limit will be honored.

    Is this wrong?
    Mark P. Wilson
    Marine Surveyor, SAMS-SA, ABYC
    Wilson Yacht Survey, Inc




  • NOAA-EnforcementNOAA-Enforcement Posts: 202 Moderator
    321-269-0004

    I suggest you contact your local NOAA Enforcement Office for questions involving returning from the Bahamas.

    Let me know if you have a problem contacting an agent.
    My purpose on this site is to help everyone understand Federal Fishery Regulations and to provide information. Working with the Florida Sportsman is a collateral (volunteer) duty I asked for and enjoy; I will only give you an answer that I’m willing to put my name on and stand behind. Sometimes that means checking with other agents/offices in the area of concern.
    Please Stay Safe And Have A Wonderful Day.
    Special Agent Allan Coker
    NOAA's Office For Fishery Law Enforcement
  • saltybumsaltybum Posts: 1,609 Captain
    Personally I think it is stupid, real stupid that red snapper is closed when everybody on both coast including Alabama says there are more red snapper they anyone has ever seen. So tell us why or what in Gods name is the ding dang bureaucratic problem?
  • Docked WagesDocked Wages Posts: 2,923 Admin
    321-269-0004

    I suggest you contact your local NOAA Enforcement Office for questions involving returning from the Bahamas.

    Let me know if you have a problem contacting an agent.

    Thanks Allan I will and post up when I get a response. In years past I have never had a problem but now a days that rules seem to cahnge too often.
    Mark P. Wilson
    Marine Surveyor, SAMS-SA, ABYC
    Wilson Yacht Survey, Inc




  • GroundsPounderGroundsPounder Posts: 51 Deckhand
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