27.2lb snapper 5 5 07by Alabama Marine Resources
 
Feb. 23, 2018 - (OBA®) - In accordance with language in an appropriations bill authored by Alabama’s Senator Shelby, the Marine Resources Division (MRD) has applied for an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) with NOAA/NMFS for the 2018 and 2019 red snapper fishing seasons.

Alabama’s plan utilizes data collected about red snapper in the Alabama reef zones through research projects MRD funds at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab. Using this data, along with harvest data collected through Snapper Check, MRD anticipates private recreational anglers potentially having a 47-day season. The season would begin June 1st and consist of weekends, which is Friday through Sunday, and run through Labor Day Monday (September 3). The week of Independence Day (June 29 - July 8) would also be included.
 
Utilizing landings reported through the Snapper Check Program, MRD will monitor the effort weekly to determine catch effort and adjust the season length, if necessary. For the EFP to be successful, reporting your catch through Snapper Check is crucial for accurate accounting. It is required by law, but more importantly, it helps maintain the season. Not reporting will potentially work against you.
 
Alabama’s plan, along with the other Gulf States, has been approved by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council. The National Marine Fisheries Service will have final discussions with each state and then post the EFP’S for a 30-day public comment period. Anticipate public comment beginning no later than the beginning of March with of approval of the plans by mid-April.
 
Once the final approval is announced, MRD will host two town-hall style meetings in each of Mobile and Baldwin counties, one in the Birmingham area and at least one Facebook Live session. These meetings are planned for the last week of April and first week of May.
 
Once the dates and locations for the meetings are confirmed we will share them with you. To be notified about the meetings, please sign up at www.outdooralabama.com and follow us on Facebook.