A Review of Fish Trapping

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. Marine Biology

First Advisor

Richard E. Dodge

Second Advisor

Curtis Burney


This paper presents an overview of fish trapping with emphasis on South Florida and the Caribbean. My interest in researching this topic was a result of reading and hearing conflicting reports concerning the trap or pot fishery.

The trapping issue was thought to be solved when Florida banned traps in 1980, but further conflict has arisen because of their continued use outside of state waters. The use of fish traps South of Fowey Rocks in the Florida .Keys and in the Tortugas has been of particular concern.

The fate of the trap fishery in the South Atlantic federal waters will be decided by the South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council as part of an upcoming amendment to the Reef Fish Management Plan. The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has allowed trapping to continue, but conservationist, recreational fishermen, sport divers, and even some commercial fishermen are asking them to reconsider.

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