Found Lost Stone Crab Trap- Help me find the owner.

Well, the wife and I went on our annual Christmas grouper trip yesterday. Beautiful day on the water, but got skunked none the less. Fished everywhere from 15' to 26' and not a nibble. Trolled the day using various lures and colors to no avail. Not sure if was the moon phase, affects of the storm or what. Did manage to snag a lost stone crab trap with the buoy missing. Seemed to be there for a while. I brought it home and would like to return it to its owner. Anyone have any input on how I can go about finding the owner of this tagged trap? Still in good shape. I have the tag number, but have no idea how to find the owner. Was in about 22' of water west of Homosassa.

Thanks and Merry Christmas!!!

Replies

  • DOCKSIDEDOCKSIDE Posts: 1,808 Captain
    Anumber1
    somewhere south of disorder and on earth... mostly .
    ..............................................................................
    IBEW LU 433
  • conchydongconchydong Pompano BeachPosts: 5,199 Admiral
    I know you thought you were doing the right thing but you aren't allowed to take a trap even if it has been abandoned and you have intentions on finding the owner. It seems like a silly law but it has a reason.
    Hope you find the owner.

    “Everyone behaves badly--given the chance.”
    ― Ernest Hemingway

  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    Call FWC but you did commit a 3rd degree felony
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • jadman69jadman69 Posts: 129 Deckhand
    I went out with my wife on Sunday and Monday without any luck either.  We trolled the afternoon and didn't even get a lizard fish to strike.  It was a bummer but both days were about as nice as they could have been with Sunday being a little cooler for sure.  I sure hope the FWC and person who's trap you got appreciates your kindness in trying to find the owner. 
  • Turner River TerrorTurner River Terror Posts: 6,870 Admiral
    Pull them Ghost Traps...Eat whatever is inside , Return to owner if possible..
    He'll be happy to have his trap back...
    Killin and Grillin :grin
  • SassaWhalerSassaWhaler Posts: 115 Deckhand
    Well, hope I don't go to jail for trying to do the right thing. The trap had no buoy and by some dumb luck my trolling lure happened to hook the rope. Thought we had a really good grouper on. Oh well, will get with FWC and pay the penalty if needed. Next time will put the thing back on the bottom, let the rope get caught in someones prop and let the owner lose what I am sure is a few hundred dollars in gear. Sucks to remove what is basically debris from the ocean and potentially a hazard in doing the right thing and may get in trouble.
  • SassaWhalerSassaWhaler Posts: 115 Deckhand
    It may be your ANUMBER1, will you turn me in???
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    What's the x # on the trap?
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    And be a **** all you want but there is a good reason for the penalties...

    Too many people claiming to do the right thing to hide their thieving.
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • jadman69jadman69 Posts: 129 Deckhand
    I don't think the bad guys are asking people especially on a forum who's crab trap they just snagged.  They take them and don't tell anyone about it.  Just like the guys that keep illegal fish.  I don't know one guy that's going to let announce to everyone that they are breaking the law.  JMO
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    jadman69 said:
    I don't think the bad guys are asking people especially on a forum who's crab trap they just snagged.  They take them and don't tell anyone about it.  Just like the guys that keep illegal fish.  I don't know one guy that's going to let announce to everyone that they are breaking the law.  JMO
    I agree, just trying to save the guy some grief.
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    If he'd just post the X# I might could tell him whose trap and what fish house.
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • SassaWhalerSassaWhaler Posts: 115 Deckhand
    ANUMBER1, I by no means was trying to be an a** in the question I asked you. I know you are a commercial guy, been around a long time and are well respected here on the forum. So I wanted you input as to how you personally would treat this situation. I figured that most of the local commercial guys around here would probably treat the situation similar as you would. I had no idea I was breaking any laws and is really not the Christmas Present wanted to get is serious crap over this. I am taking this very seriously as IF this does get out of control and go in a bad direction, this could have much more serious consequences for myself above and beyond the felony part. My father was a commercial guy here years ago and personally know several here locally. If the "thieving" of the crab is the reason for the law, then I under stand that. In fact I have reported a few vessels over the years that I have witnessed doing just that. I have too much respect for others making a living to steal their way of making a living. Even then, I do not eat shellfish. Anyway, this has turned in a very unexpected direction and by no means meant to offend anyone. I appreciate everyone's input!
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,519 AG
    I understand, sorry for coming off harsh.  What's the X# on the tag?, I  might know who it belongs to.
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • SassaWhalerSassaWhaler Posts: 115 Deckhand
    Sent you a PM. Thanks!!!
  • capt louiecapt louie citrus countyPosts: 10,046 Moderator
    I had the same thing happen. Drug it to the next closest trap buoy and tied it to that one. Figured it may have been drug away from the "line" by the boat that hit it ?  At least someone gets it..
    "You'll get your weather"
  • Ruff OneRuff One HomosassaPosts: 1,983 Captain
    I found a ghost trap, with buoy attached. It had been there quite awhile, by the look of the buoy. I trolled by it and had a double on grouper. I sort of resoned that maybe it had got caught on rocks and the owner could not get it off the bottom. I marked it of course and almost every time I troll around it there are grouper. The buoy has long ago disappeared. 
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • SassaWhalerSassaWhaler Posts: 115 Deckhand
    Ya, this one had no buoy on it at all. Guess there are better odds winning the lotto than hooking a lost trap with no buoy trolling a lure. Oh well, hard lesson learned. Next step will be to get input on the proper handling of these situations. Capt. Louis suggestion seems like a good one. Not one that crossed my mind though. Just hated to see someones property lost possibly never to be found. These commercial operations are expensive and lots of hard work. Sometimes when thinking you are doing the right thing can backfire and blow up in your face. Been fishing here for 40 years and never heard about this law or heard anything about how to handle these situations. I know the traps are not to be touched or messed with and come with stiff penalties for such. But ones with no buoys? I was thinking only of it being a hazard with the rope and returning the gear to the owner. Enjoying a beautiful day on the water, even not even getting a bite of any kind has turned into nightmare. Such is life. Hope the wound in not too deep.
  • Ruff OneRuff One HomosassaPosts: 1,983 Captain
    I don't think anyone on this forum feels like you did a ghastly deed. In fact, you did something that will probably educate some members. There will be no wound. Good luck on your next outing. 
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • DOCKSIDEDOCKSIDE Posts: 1,808 Captain
    Total bull sheet.
    somewhere south of disorder and on earth... mostly .
    ..............................................................................
    IBEW LU 433
  • Moon ShadowMoon Shadow Posts: 941 Officer
    You did nothing wrong.  But you have to be careful when posting sometime because game wardens read these reports and you never know when they are  going to be power happy.   Maybe some of the older members on the forum could remember a poor guy bragging about a big tarpon he caught.  He made the mistake of posting a picture of  him holding the tarpon  Big and costly mistake because tarpons  have to be kept in the water.  He received a ticket in the mail.  I believe it cost hm $250. 
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