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Recreational Red Snapper Season Has Returned!

Fisherman holding a red snapper that he just caught.

Get ready to reel in the excitement because Red Snapper season has returned! The return of this season never fails to make waves. Starting September 1st through the end of November, the season will reopen for 3-day weekends, and you can take advantage of catching this high-prized fish. If you’re planning on partaking in the reopening of Red Snapper season, it’s important to be well-prepared. Keep reading to find out more. 

Why fish for Red Snapper? 

Red Snapper is the fish to hunt for in the gulf. Thousands of anglers flock to Florida’s coast in hopes of catching at least 2. So, why is this fish so popular? 

  • Flavor: With an exceptional market value – they’re on everyone’s menu. From their tender and delicate meat to its sweet but mild flavors, this fish will leave you craving for more every time. 
  • Looks: You’ve seen the pictures and there is nothing more brag worthy or satisfying than posing and holding up the 50-pound, ruby-red beasts on the boat in the ocean.  
  • Limited Availability: There once was a shortage of Red Snapper due to overfishing, hence why fishing seasons and management regulations have been put into place. Since their seasons are so short, and the fish is so popular, book your next fishing adventure ahead of the next season. 

What You Need 

If you want to have any kind of success out on the water, it’s important to equip yourself with the right gear. Your fishing rod should be medium to heavy duty, designed for saltwater use. Red Snapper are strong and your gear should be up for the fight. Circle hooks are best because they are made for reef fishing and reduce gut-hooking. The bait you choose matters. Red Snapper eat anything smaller than them, so they will go for a variety of baits. This includes live or cut bait like sardines, squid or anything artificial.  

Before you cast a line, it’s important to stay up to date on rules and regulations. Updates to the rules can be made before, during oor after the season. Some important rules to check for each season include season dates, how many fish you can keep, sizes of fish and any special gear requirements. It’s also important to remember to be safe. Safety should always be a top priority on any fishing trip. You should always keep on board with you: life jackets (as many jackets as there are lives), a radio and a first aid kit. To be even more prepared, check out our blog post on fishing preparedness.   

Fast Facts 

  • In Florida, it is believed that we have the largest population of Red Snapper. 
  • Florida also has the longest Red Snapper fishing season (57 days) out of any other state. 
  • Red Snapper can grow to be about 40 inches long and weigh up to 50 pounds. 

With the correct gear, a focus on safety and knowledge of the rules, you’ll be well-prepared for your next successful fishing adventure. From their beautiful red hues to their tasty meat, this is a season of fishing you don’t want to miss out on. What are you waiting for? Book your next trip with us at Steinhatchee Marina and we promise that when you leave, you’ll have a freezer full of fish and memories that will last a lifetime!