FWC Press Release

Contact: Lee Schlesinger, (850) 487-0554

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) proposed new rules on Thursday to make it easier to recover or remove lobster and crab traps from state waters under certain conditions.

The draft rules would help spiny lobster, stone crab and blue crab fishers recover their traps following major storms by letting licensed trap fishers designate people to recover and possess their traps when the governor and FWC declare an emergency.

The new rules also would exempt local, state or federal officials from having to get FWC approval before removing traps, derelict traps and trap debris from areas where trapping is prohibited.

The FWC recently held six statewide public workshops to receive comment on the proposed rules. A final public hearing on the rules will take place during the FWC’s Sept. 12-14 meeting in St. Petersburg.