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At its March meeting, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved a limited, highly regulated recreational harvest of goliath grouper in state waters beginning Spring 2023.  This unique recreational opportunity is possible through conservation efforts by state and federal agencies that aided in the goliath grouper population rebuilding over the course of three decades, following years of overfishing. This limited harvest will allow access to a fishery that has been closed since 1990 by issuing up to 200 harvest permit tags via random-draw lottery. This approved recreational harvest of goliath grouper includes:  A recreational harvest of up to...

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At their March meeting, Commissioners with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved rules to allow for the production and sale of Florida largemouth bass as a food product. Statutory changes made during the 2021 legislative session sanctioned the sale of Florida largemouth bass produced in aquaculture facilities for food. Staff worked with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) to ensure continued genetic conservation of Florida’s iconic freshwater game fish. Key points from the approved rule language include: Allow for the culture and sale of Florida largemouth bass as a food fish. Incorporate FWC’s Genetic...

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Commission approves FWC’s proposed rule changes for statewide alligator harvest program At the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) March 2022 meeting, Commissioners approved proposed rule amendments related to the statewide alligator harvest program. The proposed improvements would allow program participants an additional 7 hours a day of hunting opportunity and add airbows with a tethered arrow as a legal method of take. These proposals would provide greater flexibility for hunt participants while continuing the management of Florida’s alligator resource for sustainability. The additional hunting hours would eliminate concerns about fully landing an alligator before the current 10 a.m....

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Ogeechee River Generates 2nd State Record Hickory Shad In Just Over a Year MIDVILLE, GA Tuesday, March 1, 2022 - 10:00 *(https://georgiawildlife.com/ogeechee-river-generates-2nd-state-record-hickory-shad-just-over-year) In just over one year, the same river produces two state record hickory shad. Timmy Woods of Kite, GA was out fishing on the Ogeechee River when he reeled in the new state record hickory shad. His catch weighed 2 lb, 10 oz, and broke the 1-year-old record (2 lb, 3 oz), according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division (WRD). “The Ogeechee River is the place to be if you are targeting record hickory...

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New State Record Shoal Bass Caught on Chattahoochee River COLUMBUS, Georgia Courtesy of Georgia DNR Monday, January 10, 2022 - 09:00https://georgiawildlife.com/new-state-record-shoal-bass-caught-chattahoochee-river Any day of fishing is good, but you know what makes it even better? A day you catch a new state record! Joseph Matthew McWhorter of Lanett, AL is the proud holder of the new state record shoal bass. His catch, caught on Dec. 23 on the Chattahoochee River near Columbus, weighed 8 lb, 5 oz, and replaces the 1977 record (8 lb, 3 oz), according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division (WRD). “What a...

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