The Blog

Mini Lobster Season

July 18, 2018 Travel & Tourism

As mini season approaches, I think that now would be a good time for a refresher on the rules & regulations.  In addition, please remember that the City of Key Colony Beach prohibits Diving and snorkeling during this time. (It is a public nuisance and unlawful for any person to dive or snorkel in any navigable canal, marina, or within three hundred (300) feet of an improved residential or commercial shoreline beginning four (4) days prior to the opening of lobster mini-season and continuing until ten (10) days has elapsed after the opening of the commercial lobster season.)

We ask our guests to be aware of the following:

Facts for All Seasons

Possession: Lobster must be of legal size before they are in
possession. NOTE: You may not have lobster in your possession
in Everglades National Park (Florida Bay).

Bag Limits: The Federal bag limit cannot be combined with
the State bag limit. In addition, people who are NOT actively
harvesting or are not properly licensed (when a license is
required) may NOT be counted for purpose of bag limits.

License Requirements: Recreational harvesters are required to
possess a valid Florida Saltwater Fishing License with a current
spiny lobster permit. Consult your license agent for exemptions.
Gear: Harvesting or attempting to harvest spiny lobster using
any device that will or could puncture, penetrate, or crush the
exoskeleton (shell) or the flesh of the lobster, and the use of such
devices is prohibited.

Commercial Lobster Traps and Ghost Traps: It is a felony
to molest, damage, or take lobster from traps in State or
Federal waters. (Recreational trapping is prohibited.)
Coral is protected from damage and removal in State and
Federal waters. Do NOT touch, hold on to, stand on, break,
anchor on, flip over or otherwise harm coral. It is a fragile living
animal.

Egg-bearing (berried) lobster regardless of species must be
released unharmed. Stripping egg-bearing females of eggs, and
possession of spiny or ridged slipper lobster tails from which
eggs have been removed is prohibited. Eggs are an orange,
yellow, brown, or red mass found covering the underside of the
lobster’s tail.

Dive Flag: All divers and snorkelers in the water are required to
prominently display a diver down flag. Vessel operators should
slow to idle speed within 100 yards of a dive flag.

“Bully-netting” is using a circular frame attached at a right
angle to the end of a pole and supporting a conical bag of
webbing. Possession of bully nets is prohibited in Everglades
National Park (Florida Bay).

“Hoop-netting” is using a frame, circular or otherwise,
supporting a shallow bag of webbing and suspended by a line
and bridles. Possession of hoop nets is prohibited in Everglades
National Park (Florida Bay).

“Artificial Habitats in State Waters”: Placing artificial habitat
or harvesting lobster from artificial habitat is prohibited.
Artificial habitat is any material placed in the waters of the
state that is reasonably suited to providing cover and habitat
for spiny lobster. Such material may be constructed of, but is
not limited to, wood, metal, fiberglass, concrete, or plastic,
or any combination thereof, and may be fabricated for this
specific purpose or for some other purpose. Artificial habitat
does not include fishing gear allowed by FWC or artificial reefs
permitted by Florida DEP or Army Corps

For additional information, please visit Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission.