Sunday January 1 greater amberjack season will open for recreational harvest in all Gulf of Mexico waters.

Florida state waters are from shore to 9 nautical miles out and are managed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). Federal waters extend from where state waters end, out to about 200 nautical miles and are managed by NOAA Fisheries.

Anglers going after amberjack when it opens are allowed to keep one per person per day with a minimum size limit of thirty-four inches to the fork. The season will close for June and July, it will then reopen on August 1 and remain open until the quota is met.

Amberjack season has been closed since September 10 in state waters due to a temporary closure that was put into place because NOAA Fisheries estimated that the 2016 annual federal recreational quota was exceeded and the recreational harvest season in adjacent federal waters closed.

The quota is the poundage of fish that can be caught each year while maintaining a sustainable fishery. Federal rules require that any harvest in excess of the quota for an overfished species must be deducted from the next year’s quota and could result in a shortened season.

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