The Tampa Bay Times

Lobster hunting was the big news last week.  Last week the Florida two day mini-season opened. Many scuba divers and snorkelers left the bindings of the land to pursue Florida Spiny Lobsters on, under and behind all the natural reefs of Florida.  Reports were good for all areas.  The larger concentrations are always in the Florida Keys and Key Biscayne. As you go north from the keys, the lobsters get fewer and fewer, but the lobsters tend to grow bigger the more north you go.

The two day mini-season opened last Wednesday and closed the next day. Lobster hunting has been closed in Florida waters since last Thursday, but the regular lobster season opens tomorrow, August 6th. Once again, the lobster hunters will be hitting the water for lobsters.  Florida Spiny lobsters must be measured in the water and their body carapace needs to measure over 3 inches. This area starts from the rostral horns and ends at the bottom of the carapace. You must have a Florida saltwater fishing license and the Florida Spiny Lobster tag.  All the do’s and dont’s can be found at www.myfwc.com.

There are plenty of dive charter boats in Florida that have openings on their boats for lobster hunting scuba divers and snorkelers.  From Jacksonville to Key West you can contact dive charters and book a fun day or two of lobster hunting for you and your dive buddy.  If you can’t make the first few days, don’t worry, the season extends for eight months and ends the last day of March 2021.

Capt. Bill Hardman teaches scuba classes and runs trips for Scuba, Spearfishing, Freediving and Technical diving courses at Aquatic Obsessions, 6193 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg, FL  33710.  You can reach Capt. Hardman at (727) 344-3483 (DIVE) or CaptainBillHardman@gmail.com