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July 02, 2014

Alabama Extends Red Snapper Season

Alabama anglers get another chance as state defies federal regulations

The federal red snapper season was only nine days for the entire year of 2014.

Governor Robert Bentley of Alabama along with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Marine Resources Division announced that Alabama state waters are opening an additional season of exactly 9 days.

“The state red snapper season will be open during three of the biggest weekends for fishing: The Fourth of July weekend, the Roy Martin Dauphin Island Young Anglers Tournament and the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo,” Governor Robert Bentley said. “Red snapper fishing is popular along the Alabama Gulf Coast, and the extra fishing days are good for the Gulf Coast economy. I welcome fishermen to take advantage of the additional opportunities for red snapper fishing in our waters.”

Federal waters remain closed to red snapper and gray triggerfish, which begins at 3 miles from shore. 

The Alabama Legislature passed a bill in the 2014 session to extend state waters to 9 miles. However, the new distance is not recognized by the federal government. Governor Bentley's recent press release said that anglers possessing red snapper or gray triggerfish from 3 to 9 miles from shore could be issued citations from "federal or state law enforcement officers," and should be aware that this decision would be "at your own risk."

The bag limit will be 2 red snapper per person per day and 2 gray triggerfish per person per day. The minimum size for red snapper is 16 inches in total length and the minimum size for gray triggerfish, 14 inches, fork length.  

Fishermen are required to report red snapper to the Marine Resources Division. Only one report is required per vessel trip, and fishermen can provide details via a smartphone app available under “Outdoor Alabama” in the iTunes or Google Play app stores; online at outdooralabama.com; by telephone at 1-844-REDSNAP (1-844-733-7627), or by paper forms available at select coastal public boat launches. Additional information can be found at outdooralabama.com/fishing/saltwater/redsnappercheck/.