Red snapper season is fast approaching
For the past several years, anglers have not been allowed to harvest American red snapper. The catch moratorium was put in place due to low population numbers thought to be caused by overfishing. However, recent studies show a population increase and a limited harvest season has been approved by fishery managers.
On the weekends of August 10 and 17, anglers can catch and keep American red snapper. As I understand it, you can keep one fish per person per day with no minimum or maximum size limit. If you want to catch and keep an American red snapper (which are delicious), clear your schedule now.
With the red snapper season fast approaching, Elliott and I joined my brother David on a scouting trip. We met early Sunday morning and made the hour-long trip to a live bottom area in 100 feet of water. Using the depth finder, we looked around until we found a small ledge that showed a lot of fish. We dropped Shimano Butterfly Jigs down to the ledge. They never made it to the bottom. A school of big amberjack intercepted our lures on the way down. Amberjack are strong fish and punishing fighters. After a long fight, we released the amberjack and took a breather.
On the next drop to the ledge, Elliott caught and released a king mackerel. For the next hour or so, we caught every kind of fish except a red snapper. So, we moved to another area in 120 feet of water. David was the first to drop his jig into the water. It took several seconds for the jig to hit the bottom. He cranked it up a few feet and began jigging. It did not take long before his rod doubled over. Elliott and I began teasing David about hooking another amberjack. He got the last laugh when an American red snapper came up from the depths.
After a quick picture, we vented the fish and carefully released it. As it swam out of our sight, David said, “See you next week!”