News Releases

FWC extends order to aid dead saltwater fish cleanup efforts

News Release

Friday, January 29, 2010

Media contact: Lee Schlesinger, 850-487-0554

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has extended its executive order that temporarily suspends certain saltwater fishing regulations to allow people and local communities to legally dispose of dead fish found in the water and on the shore.  This order initially was issued on Jan. 15 in response to numerous reports of dead saltwater fish killed by the recent extended cold-weather period in Florida.

The order was set to expire on Feb. 1. However, the FWC decided to extend this order through Feb. 28, because the agency continues to receive reports of dead saltwater fish in many areas around the state.

The order removes specific harvest regulations for all dead saltwater fish of any species that have died as a result of prolonged exposure to cold weather in Florida waters.  The order also allows people to collect dead saltwater fish from Florida's shoreline and from the water by hand, cast net, dip net or seine.

People who take dead saltwater fish under the provisions of this order may not sell, trade or consume such fish, and the dead fish must immediately be disposed of in compliance with local safety, health and sanitation requirements for such disposal.

In addition, people who take dead saltwater fish under the provisions of this order are not required to possess a saltwater fishing license, and all fish taken under the provisions of this order shall be those that have died as a result of prolonged exposure to cold weather.

FWC scientists are actively monitoring and collecting information on the widespread fish-kill reports it has received from the field in order to analyze the impacts to fish populations caused by the cold weather.

For more information about the 2010 cold-weather saltwater fish kills, go to MyFWC.com/Rules and click on "Fishing - Saltwater."



FWC Facts:
No one may ski or aquaplane from 1/2 hour past sunset through 1/2 hour before sunrise.

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