Fishing effort in Florida has increased dramatically over the past decade and is forecast to continue as Florida’s resident population of 14.7 million increases daily by about 1,000 people.
More than 40 million tourists visit the state annually, most with coastal destinations. Fishing is a favorite pastime of Florida’s residents and visitors, and in 1997, saltwater anglers made about 24 million fishing trips and caught 141 million marine fishes, 71.5 million of which were released. Because increased exploitation could negatively impact Florida fisheries, scientists and managers must remain diligent and innovative in their efforts to utilize fishery resources wisely and conservatively.
Managers of Florida’s fisheries use a combination of traditional regulations to control harvests and protect fish stocks. Read the full article below!