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By The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Starting Jan. 1, recreational harvesters age 16 and older who fish with blue crab traps will need to complete an online, no-cost recreational blue crab trap registration before placing their traps in the water. A similar requirement has been in effect for recreational stone crab traps since Oct. 15.

This no-cost registration will allow the FWC to collect needed important information about this recreational fishery for future stock assessments and management decisions.

To register, visit GoOutdoorsFlorida.com (the FWC licensing system) and add the Recreational Blue Crab Trap Registration to your account. All recreational harvesters who are age 16 or older and fish with blue crab traps, including those harvesters that are otherwise exempt from needing a saltwater fishing license, are required to complete this no-cost online trap registration.

Upon completion, each person will receive a series of five unique trap registration numbers, one for each of the five traps the person may fish under the recreational blue crab fishing regulations. Each trap placed in the water must be marked with one of these registration numbers along with the owner’s full name and address. Registration numbers for blue crab traps will begin with the letter “B.” This information must be legible and must be permanently attached to each trap.

When marking traps, it is important to use materials that will withstand being submerged in salt water. For example, engraved metal or plastic pet tags and laminated cards are much better options than a piece of plastic that has been marked with permanent ink or paint.

Learn more about blue crab regulations at http://bit.ly/2YULXzf.

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