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What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

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  • What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

    I have been looking for rules on catching bait in florida saltwater. However there is a section for catching bait in freshwater but not for saltwater on the f&g websites. Need to know about using a trap to catch bait in saltwater. Can use use a common minnow trap with small wire mesh to catch bait in saltwater. Do you put a bouy on it like a crab trap? Can I use a crab trap to catch bait fish? If Im not trying to catch crab with it does it need to have the escapre rings? What really says what a trap is for and what type it is? There are so many styles what says what type is what type and can use use any of them to catch bait? It says you cant catch lobster with a trap for recreation but can I use a trap to catch bait fish that might catch a lobster? Do you tag and bouy a bait trap like a crab trap or lobster pot? What about mesh width? Does a bait trap have to have large width like a crab trap 1.5"? Please dont direct me to a link. Respond with info you know yourself or cut and paist what you have. Thanks


  • #2
    Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

    Only shrimp, stone crab, blue crab and pin fish can be harvested by recreational fishers using traps.

    What are the regulations for saltwater pinfish traps?
    Pinfish traps not exceeding 2 feet in any dimension, with a throat or entrance not exceeding 3 inches in height by 3/4 inch in width may be used to harvest baitfish in saltwater.

    Here is the rule:
    68B-4.020 Saltwater Fish Traps.
    (1) It is unlawful for any person to fish with, set, or place in the waters of the state any trap other than those listed in this subsection.
    (a) A blue crab trap authorized by and used according to the requirements of Rule Chapter 68B-45, F.A.C.
    (b) A spiny lobster trap authorized by and used according to the requirements of Rule Chapter 68B-24, F.A.C.
    (c) A stone crab trap authorized by and used according to the requirements of Rule Chapter 68B-13, F.A.C.
    (d) A black sea bass trap authorized by and used according to the requirements of paragraph 68B-14.005(1)(b), F.A.C.
    (e) A shrimp trap authorized by and used according to the requirements of paragraph 68B-31.007(2)(e), F.A.C.
    (f) A pinfish trap not exceeding 2 feet in any dimension, with a throat or entrance not exceeding 3 inches in height by 3/4 inch in width.
    (g) A trap authorized for the harvest of freshwater fish by Rule Chapter 68A-23, F.A.C.
    (2) It is unlawful for any person to land, take, sell, or offer for sale any saltwater fish caught in state waters by any trap other than a trap specified in subsection (1).
    Please no PMs. My mailbox is full anyway......

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    • #3
      Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

      go to www.myfwc.com.
      sigpic "Andrea C"

      BOAT=Best Of All Times

      "Everyday above ground is a good day"

      Winterization=sneekers, jeans and a sweater.

      Same Ship.....Different Day.

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      • #4
        Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

        A hidden rule has always been, "If you catch a LOT of bait, you MUST share with emoney" I think that's rule 670-9.0448. I think.
        "If it ain't broke....don't worry, 5 minutes with me and it will be!"

        1996 Trophy 1802 - 120hp Force (by Mercury...snicker)
        8' Hardbottom Dinghy w/Evinrude 6hp OB (oh yeah, this is the 'boat')
        In the market for nice, local area, sailboat, with the operative word being-"cheap"

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        • #5
          Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

          I suppose you can side step the whole "trap" issue and use a cast net, which is how everyone I know gets bait. I'm not aware of any cast net bait regs, but I'm sure they exist some where. Once you get good a throwing it (I'm terrible) you can get a days worth of bait in 2-3 casts at most, but there, is a bit of an art to throwing one effectively. The guys that can do it right make it look real easy, kinda like golf.

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          • #6
            Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

            Forgive the name. I fat fingered my keys while registering lol. Call me J.

            Ok I read this topic and couldn't find anything about Sandflies or also called mole crabs. Is there a law on selling them? They are great bait for pompano and other fish.

            Thanks in advance

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            • #7
              Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

              Hi Jmslone. I've used sandfleas my whole life and I'm not aware of any limit/regulation on them. I'm pretty sure the only limit is how many you can carry. My dad and I would shovel sand in the surf and pass it through a screen to separate them. Within a few scoops, we'd have more than enough bait for the day. We'd put them on brightly colored jigs (nylure jigs) and catch Spanish Mackerel, Pompino, Cobia and more simply by wading off the beach about waist deep. Generally speaking there aren't many regs on the amount of bait as much as how you catch them, but those apply more to fish/crab species than sandfleas and the like.

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              • #8
                Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

                Originally posted by kfa4303 View Post
                Hi Jmslone. I've used sandfleas my whole life and I'm not aware of any limit/regulation on them. I'm pretty sure the only limit is how many you can carry. My dad and I would shovel sand in the surf and pass it through a screen to separate them. Within a few scoops, we'd have more than enough bait for the day. We'd put them on brightly colored jigs (nylure jigs) and catch Spanish Mackerel, Pompino, Cobia and more simply by wading off the beach about waist deep. Generally speaking there aren't many regs on the amount of bait as much as how you catch them, but those apply more to fish/crab species than sandfleas and the like.
                Thanks for the reply! I was wondering tho. I have found a great way to harvest them and can get them in large numbers and I have seen them in bait stores for sell. I would like to sell them but don't know the law on it. I'm here in Fort Walton Beach Florida and there are so many of these things.

                ------------------------------------------------------
                On another note, who can I talk to here that maybe an admin that could change my name to what I meant to register with?
                Jmalone was what I meant to type and registered pretty fast and didn't check my spelling/typing lol.

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                • #9
                  Re: What are regulations for catching bait in Florida SALTWATER?

                  yeah, selling them may be a different matter, but I think you can harvest as many as you want for yourself. They're great bait, kind of a local secret that most of the tourists don't know about, but the surf/inshore fish love 'em

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