Largemouth bass are the nation’s most sought after freshwater sportfish. Seventy percent of Florida’s 1.4 million freshwater anglers target bass, generating well over $1.25 billion in economic impact. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) recently adopted the Black Bass Management Plan (BBMP) to guide future management of largemouth bass. The BBMP calls for a review of all current black bass regulations. A team of FWC biologists is currently reviewing these regulations and working with stakeholders to determine angler desires and expectations. This information could lead to rule modifications throughout the state.
Guided by survey results and fisheries data, the team will determine if regulation changes are needed and develop a draft of new regulations, if warranted. The goal of future regulations is optimum sustainable use of Florida’s bass fisheries, with emphasis on high quality and trophy bass. Our vision is to simplify regulations where possible, while still providing diverse angling opportunities that promote high angler satisfaction.
Right now you have two types of opportunities to provide input for this regulation review process:
1) Mail-in survey
FWC staff will distribute mail-in surveys by various means including handing them out at fishing locations, making them available at various angler and outdoor shows, and attending various bass club meetings and tournaments. Surveys will also be available at various retail locations that sell fishing equipment. All of these surveys will be postage-paid and ready to be filled out and sent in. Additionally, if you would prefer, you can download the survey , print it, and mail it to us.
2) Public Open House Events
Open house events will be held across the state to provide the public an opportunity to come and tell us what you think about bass regulations. Should they change? Should they stay the same? You tell us! The open houses are casual events with no set schedule allowing you to come by at the time that is best for you and spend as much or little time as you like. FWC staff will be available to take your input throughout these events.
Bass Regulation Open House schedule
(5:00-8:00 PM unless otherwise noted)
*Meeting time will be 4:00-7:00 PM.
We need your input to ensure the future of quality black bass fishing in Florida.