A final rule proposal may change the way goliath grouper are harvested across the state. 

The new regulation would allow a “limited, highly-regulated harvest of goliath grouper in Florida state waters,” according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). 

The proposal would allow the harvest through a lottery-style drawing and would have multiple stipulations, including area and seasonal closures, post-harvest requirements, and size and gear restrictions. 

The purpose of allowing state residents to fish for goliath grouper is two-fold: it would provide researchers with much-needed biological data while also helping to protect and preserve the native population. 

The FWC is asking for public input during two online workshops, which are scheduled for Tuesday, January 11 and Thursday, January 13. 

For anyone interested, click here to vist the FWC’s website or call 850-487-0554.