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ladyluck

New Forum On Snook, Your Thoughts

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I just read an OpEd in the "Florida Sportsman" by Karl Wickstrom.

 

There is an all-day symposium on January 13th in Orlando.  Wickstrom feels that the whole state should adopt a unifrom Slot and closure season.  The slott size would be 28-33 inches (altantic is an inch different) and the dates would be from December 1 through January 31; as well as June 1st through August 31.

 

Your thoughts.

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The following is my personal opinion which really doesn't count for anything especially with the regulators, but I would like the season closed ALL THE TIME !!!

 

Snook are way too valuable to go on the dinner plate. Eat reds or trout.

 

At most have a very short season and require a tag similar to tarpon to harvest one.

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I like every thing Karl proposed, makes sense to have one set of rules state wide.

Snook have recover well since 2010, don't see a good reason not to give 8 weeks

back to the gulf coast fishermen, and an inch to the east coasters. IMHO

X2.   Nicely said.

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The reason for two different slot limits is the east coast have larger snook. Makes sense to me. And since I only catch and release snook, whatever slot limit is adopted, is OK by me. But watch out, once the powers that be get their mitts on changing anything, they will screw it up.

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I'm going to ring in on this with both a comment and a question.  I've not been fishing for as long as most of you have so I hope this doesn't sound ignorant but....I like to eat fish.  I value the nutritional benefit.  I like flounder, mullet, catfish, trout, redfish, macs, etc.  I harvest only enough to make a fish dinner 2 - 3 times a month.  I would like to try the taste of snook once.  I know some people who say it's the best of all.  I also know some who don't like it at all.  I know the slots for flounder, trout, reds begin under the 20 inch mark.  I spoke to a fishing guide several months ago and in general conversation he suggested that the slot for snook be of a similar measurement range.  His argument was that the slot size, as it is now, includes the breeder stock and he disagreed with that.  Said keeping the bag limit the same (with tag requirement) but changing the slot size would protect the larger breeder stock from harvest and the smaller snook would make an excellent dinner fillet size.  That sounded logical to me so I'm curious what the counter argument would be.

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In the past I have eaten a few Snook. While they do taste good I believe that it is a " Forbidden Fruit " type of thing.

 

All the other fish you mentioned above are susceptible to some extent to red tide but none of them are in such peril of being devastated by a hard freeze as are Snook.

 

With all the other pressures they face, increase in fishing pressure, loss of habitat, degradation of water quality, and questionable management, it seems we are rolling the dice with their future possible abundance.

 

Years from now you could be telling your kids and grandkids about the wonderful Snook fishery we used to have but rather than protect it we decided to eat it !

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Responsible harvesting of snook within the current guidelines will not hurt the species.

 

It is hard to catch and land a snook within the slot on any given trip. They are only in season 5 months out of the year.

 

I catch dozens or more throughout the year and they always swim away safely. So I don't feel the slightest bit "guilty" about keeping 1 or 2 per year if I happen to catch one in the slot in season and decide to eat it. Snook is by far my favorite fish to catch(and eat). I have great respect for the species and I always treat them with care.

 

Fishers like myself who respect snook and harvest them sparingly are not negatively effecting the snook population at all IMO. Poachers who keep them often and/or remove large breeders from the population ARE having a negative effect on the species.

 

But realistically - Man's activities - especially under the strict regulations that are currently in place - are not going to make or break the species by any stretch of the imagination.

 

There's my 2 cents.

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I've eaten my share of snook when living on the east coast. It is really good! But I choose to be catch and release on everything I catch, and I love to eat fish! I don't target flounder, trout, catfish, or any other types of non sport fish. I truly have always enjoyed the passion of catching and fooling that fish, and releasing that fish so I can have another shot at it. I don't hate on people that keep what they catch, but it do kind of laugh quietly when some post pics of their slot limit of trout, reds, etc and after a few more times of posting up pics, they aren't catching as much... Go figure,.... Duh

I think the slot size for snook is way too big! And yes that is breeder size. If you go fishing to eat what you catch, more power to you, but if you don't like going out to enjoy the "sport" of fishing and the challenge it provides, then don't complain about "I went out to my normal honey hole and didn't find any fish, any ideas of what lure or bait I should use??" As I quietly laugh, I also quietly say to myself, "well off u hadn't kept every damn fish u caught even if BARELY legal every single trip out, you would probably be able to "enjoy" catching more and bigger fish when you go out". Pretty simple.

Again, not hating on people that keep some fish. But don't bitch when it gets tuff in your normal spots.

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