recreational fishermen hooked fewer fish in 2016 than they did in
Anglers brought an
estimated 8.5 million fish to the docks in 2016, a decrease of 18 percent from
weight of these landings inched up, increasing by 2 percent to 12.2 million
pounds. Anglers also released 1.5 percent more fish in 2016 than in
took 16.2 percent more fishing trips in 2016 than they did in 2015. This trend
continued even in the fall following Hurricane Matthew.
The top five
recreational species harvested, by pounds, remained the same as in 2015. They
were dolphin, bluefish, yellowfin tuna, cobia and wahoo.
tuna harvest increased 145 percent from 2015. Anglers harvested 60,134 yellowfin
tuna with a total weight of 2.3 million pounds. Bluefish harvests increased by
18 percent to 1.2 million fish (862,558 pounds), and wahoo harvests increased by
21 percent to 23,809 fish (640,807 pounds).
two of the top five species decreased significantly.
harvested 263,278 dolphin, with a total weight of 2.8 million pounds in 2016.
That was a 39.4 percent decrease in the number of dolphin anglers brought to the
docks. This dip in harvest may have resulted from the greater availability of
yellowfin tuna and other offshore species, such as king mackerel, wahoo and
number of cobia landed fell by 42.5 percent, in 2016 to 9,288 fish (293,544
another notable change, estimated spotted seatrout harvests for 2016
increased by 342 percent over 2015, which were the lowest recreational
spotted seatrout landings on record. Anglers brought 386,021 (688,682
pounds) spotted seatrout to the docks in 2016.
can fluctuate from year-to year based on many factors, including environmental
conditions and fishing effort.
of Marine Fisheries estimates recreational fishing harvests through broad-based
intercept surveys, where port agents talk to fishermen on the beach, at the
piers and at boat ramps, and through mail surveys to license
For a full
landings report, click on the 2016 Annual Fisheries Bulletin link here.