Red Snapper Mini Season Starts Friday

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CRD is asking for fish carcasses during the Dec. 8-10, 2017 season.

Georgia recreational saltwater anglers will have a three-day red snapper season in federal waters Dec. 8-10, 2017. Each angler is allowed to harvest one red snapper per day with no size restriction during what’s being called a “mini season.”

DNR’s Coastal Resources Division (CRD) is asking for help from recreational anglers who get lucky enough to boat their one red snapper per day. By turning in a filleted red snapper carcass (you keep the fillets!) at one of eight drop-off locations, one lucky angler will each receive a $50 Academy Sports and Outdoors Store gift card. One for-hire guide who participates in this special effort to collect red snapper data during the 2017 mini-season will also win a gift card.

A list of drop-off locations is found on the CRD website.

CRD’s Marine Sportfish Carcass Recovery Project began in the fall of 1997. This project takes advantage of the fishing efforts of hundreds of anglers by turning filleted fish carcasses that anglers would normally discard into a source of much needed data on Georgia’s marine sportfish.

Each freezer is marked with an identifying sign and a list of target fish species. Cooperating anglers can place the filleted carcasses, with head and tail intact, in a bag, drop in a completed angler information card, and then place the bag in the freezer. Each fish is identified to species, the fish length is measured, sex is determined, and the otoliths are removed. The otoliths are then used to age the fish. Nearly 2,000 unique anglers have donated more than 65,000 fish carcasses since the project began.

If there’s not a carcass freezer close to you, CRD asks anglers to encourage their local marina to participate. Marinas and fishing clubs who would like to host one of the freezers should contact Michael Mock or Ryan Harrell at (912) 264-7218.

CRD and the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council is also encouraging red snapper anglers to report their catch during the mini season to a “MyFishCount” website. MyFishCount is a pilot reporting platform for recreational fishermen to report red snapper catches in the South Atlantic region during the 2017 red snapper mini season.

For more information on the recent opening for recreational snapper fishermen, visit the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council website.

If you venture offshore during the mini season, please send you pictures to letters@gon.com and include caption information.

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