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BOKEELIA | How to cash in on the next cobia you catch

Bokeelia Fishing Pier
Posted at 3:32 PM, Sep 11, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-11 18:37:20-04

BOKEELIA, Fla. — If you were looking for an excuse to go fishing, this might be it.

Florida Fish and Wildlife (FWC) said during the month of September, fishermen can earn a $50 reward for catching a Cobia and turning it over to them.

Here are the rules from FWC:

  • To arrange a biologist to meet you and get a $50 reward call the appropriate number below
    • For southeast Florida (Ft. Lauderdale – Sebastian) call 561-510-5620
    • For Southwest Florida (Naples – St. Petersburg) call 727-220-7108
    • For northwest Florida (St. Petersburg - Steinhatchee) call 727-685-7354
  • Fish must be kept whole or filleted carcasses with organs intact on ice.

FWC said biologists will use the data collected by acoustic receivers along the coasts which allows researchers to track Cobia movements and learn more about the spawning migrations of the Gulf and Atlantic stocks.
FWC said if you catch a tagged Cobia:

  • For the purpose of this study, we discourage the harvest of tagged Cobia.
  • Take a picture of the tag.
  • Record the tag number, fork length, date, and general location of catch.
  • Release the fish in good condition with tags still intact.
  • Call the number above in your region and get a reward and shirt.
  • Releasing tagged cobia will allow researchers to continue gathering valuable data.