Feel a case coming on? It's called bug fever and it strikes every July on the coastal areas of Florida and are flooded with Lobster Hunters trying to get their share of this year’s bounty during mini lobster-season. Mini lobster season always falls on the last consecutive Wednesday and Thursday in July. This year it falls on July 30th and July 31st beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday and ends at 12 a.m. (midnight) on Thursday. There is also a regular eight-month lobster season is always August 6 through March 31.
In the clench of bug fever, divers who are normally at ease to breathe deep, swim slow and look at magnificent fish, suddenly desire the competitive adventure of the hunt and the sweet taste of victory — grilled or boiled, and served with butter.
If you have Bug Fever, you are not alone. This is why you need to review the rules and regulations to survive this lobster season without hurting your pride, yourself or the reef.
You are required to have a saltwater fishing license and a lobster permit to harvest spiny lobster. Licenses are available through dive shops, many tackle shops, and marine supply stores. They are also available through the FWC Website.
Depending where you are hunting for lobsters, read all rules and regulations of that area and fully understand the bag limit per person / per day. Possession limits are strictly enforced on and off the water.
Size limits of the spiny lobster have a minimum size limit that must be larger than 3” shell, measured in the water. Egg bearing lobsters must be released unharmed. You can recognize the eggs by an orange, yellow, brown or red mass found under the covering of the lobster’s tail. Possession and use of a measuring device is required at all times.
Get prepared now with all the rules/regulations and tools needed for a successful Mini Season!