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Recreational Stone Crab Pots

My father has 5 that he got last year after the season opened. Can he start to soak them prior to 10-15? I had heard you can put in one week early? Is that accurate? I always thought the first date you could drop is 10-8 and the first date to pull is 10-15? This is State waters, not Federal.


  • capttimcapttim Posts: 39 Deckhand
    From the FWC website:
    When can I put stone crab traps in the water?
    Stone crab season is from October 15 to May 15. However, this does not mean that you must place your traps on October 15th. The period of time before open season that your traps may be placed is deemed the "soak season" and begins 10 days prior to the open of the season. The start of soak season falls on October 5th. At this time you may place your stone crab traps in the water. Please be aware that once placed, you may not tend to the traps until the start of the season at which time you may begin harvesting at sunrise on October 15th as stated in the Florida Administrative Code (FAC) Chapter 68B-13. This states that "traps may be worked during daylight hours only, and the pulling of traps from one hour after official sunset until one hour before official sunrise is prohibited." For the full text, please visit this site: https://www.flrules.org/Default.asp and search for CHAPTER 68B-13.

    Also, you must remove all traps by sunset May 15th as stated in the FAC: "The season for the harvest, possession and sale of stone crab claws shall be from October 15 through May 15, each year. No person, firm or corporation, shall harvest, or have in his or her possession, regardless of where taken, or sell or offer for sale, any stone crab of any size, or any parts thereof, from May 16 through October 14, each year, except for stone crab claws, placed in inventory by a wholesale or retail dealer as defined in Section 370.07, Florida Statutes, prior to May 16 of each year."

    For more information on the recreational harvest of stone crabs, please visit our Web site: http://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/regulations/stone-crabs/.
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