In case you missed it, the results are in! Thanks to the many people who contacted the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and voiced their opposition to a limited harvest of goliath groupers, the commissioners chose NOT to pursue the initiative at this time.
Primarily found in southern Florida waters, goliath groupers aggregate off the coast of Jupiter every year between July and September to spawn. Currently, biologists lack the data to confirm that the over-harvested species has sufficiently rebounded to support reopening even a limited harvest. The Federal government had already weighed in on the subject and extended their ban on harvesting goliaths. The FWC commissioners met in late April and came to the same conclusion.
The following is the bullet point regarding the goliath grouper agenda item quoted from the FWC’s May 2018 edition of Fishing in the Know.
- Goliath grouper: Commission discussed biology, available data, and stakeholder views. Commission directed staff to continue current goliath grouper research and management, and develop a road map to direct future conservation efforts. They did not pursue a limited harvest.
Again, thank you to all the people who advocated for the goliath groupers. You made a difference.