When the underwater visibility in the Gulf of Mexico cleans up, hopefully in a week or so, divers should find Florida Spiny lobsters in some of their favorite lobster spots. The heavy winds and seas of tropical storm Fred will have driven most of these lobsters deep in the holes, crevices, and cracks of their rocky homes. As the weather gets better these lobsters will start heading out to eat. The regular lobster season started on August 6th and will continue until the last day of March of 2022. This far north in the Gulf of Mexico tends to have lobsters that have traveled up from the Florida Keys and that’s a long walk for a lobster, so many of the lobsters in this area are older and bigger than in the Florida Keys. If you catch a big one and want to memorialize the catch, the only way to get a taxidermy job on the lobster is to have the original lobster. There are no lobster blanks to buy from a taxidermist. Keep the lobster is a cooler with water and ice and it should last for a couple days. A quality taxidermist will remove most of the meat and deliver the meat back to you for consumption if you keep it well iced. Make sure that the taxidermist paints the lobster with airbrush technique, restoring the original colors and then covers it with coats of clearcoat so it will look fresh for many years.
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