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Captain Paul, do you happen to know the location of the shipwreck Halo in the GI 114 block. It was sunk by submarine in 1942 and was not discovered until 2000 by C&C Technologies in a pipeline survey for Pogo producing company.

December 17, 2015 at 9:13am

Hooked into 3 sailfish just south of LOOP approximately 25 miles offshore on October 10, 2015. We landed one, lost one behind the boat in the prop wash, and the big one is probably still tail walking on its way to Cozumel. We just happened to be at the right place at the right time. The fish were actually holding about 200 yards on the up current side of the drill ship.

October 21, 2015 at 1:44pm

Gulf Council Votes to Shorten Recreational Red Snapper Season

Council Needs to Explore New Management Ideas Now

April 10, 2014
Matthew Smelser, (512) 691-3420,
(Baton Rouge, LA – April 10, 2014) The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, an appointed body of state and federal fishery managers for the region’s federal fisheries, voted in favor of an emergency measure today that will limit the recreational red snapper season to 11 days with a two fish per day, per angler limit. This decision comes after a federal judge ruled the current management of the recreational fishery illegal.

The Council faced a May 15, 2014 deadline by the court to adopt adequate “accountability measures” that must ensure the recreational fishery will not exceed its harvest limit. According to its own data, the failed recreational management policies implemented by the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Council led to overharvesting of red snapper during six of the last seven recreational fishing seasons. The shortening of the 2014 season is a result of the Council applying a buffer to ensure that landings remain within the fishery’s sustainable limit.

“As the overfished red snapper population rebuilds, it is important for the Council to keep the fishery within a sustainable limit set by scientists. We can understand the time limits the Council faced for the 2014 season, but closures and limited seasons are never going to work, they haven’t worked for years, and it is time for the Council to step up,” said Pamela Baker, Gulf of Mexico Director for Environmental Defense Fund’s Oceans program. “The Council needs to examine new ideas that can give anglers the flexibility to fish year-round and for-hire businesses the freedom to take customers out for red snapper when it makes sense for them – and do all of this while conserving the red snapper population for generations to come.”

The Council’s vote will need to be approved by the Secretary of Commerce in order to take effect for the 2014 season, which is set to start on June 1st. A decision today by the state of Louisiana to adopt a year-round recreational fishing season in state waters, a move that will make the state fishery inconsistent with federal regulations, will likely decrease the length of the red snapper season even further.

“Until the Council adopts long-term solutions to the shortened seasons recreational fishermen are facing, this chaos will continue throughout the Gulf,” said Baker.

The red snapper fishery faced this kind of turmoil in the commercial sector several years ago before implementing a year-round individual fishing quota program that has kept commercial fishermen within their sustainable limit since 2007. “It is time for the Council to overhaul management as it did when it fixed the commercial fishery. There is no reason to continue the chaos and economic and ecological waste of the current system,” said Baker. “This outdated and misguided approach directly prevents recreational fishermen from reaping benefits of the rebuilding red snapper fishery, like longer and more predictable seasons.”

There were positive steps made this week by the Council through its support of a pilot project for Alabama charter for-hire operators. The pilot would test an allocation-based management program for charter for-hire boats that is similar to a pilot already underway with 17 headboat operators in Florida, Alabama and Texas. The Council also moved forward in developing an individual fishing quota management plan for the Gulf’s recreational for-hire fleet. This would be a permanent management change using a similar approach to both of these pilots.

“Fixing management for the recreational for-hire industry should remain a priority for the Council. These pilots and the proposed management plan are important steps toward solving the problems facing anglers in the Gulf of Mexico,” said Baker. “The Council should apply this same urgency to fixing failed management for the entire recreational fishery.”

Unfortunately, the Council took a step back by continuing to pursue the distraction of Amendment 28, a proposal that would take a portion of the commercial red snapper fishery and give it to the recreational fishery. The Council voted by a one-vote margin to attach must-pass accountability measures to Amendment 28. This move was a clear attempt to force support for a controversial reallocation scheme that is opposed by every restaurant association in the Gulf as well as the National Restaurant Association, many fishermen, seafood businesses, and Environmental Defense Fund.

“The Council needs to move beyond the distraction of reallocation and focus on management changes that can actually improve fishing for recreational fishermen,” said Baker. “Management changes like tags and for-hire quota programs could provide longer seasons and better fishing opportunities while conserving fish populations for future generations. Reallocation will do none of these things over the long-term.”

The next meeting of the council will take place June 23 through 27 in Key West, Florida. Further debate on new management ideas for recreational fishermen, reallocation of red snapper, and other issues will likely be on the agenda.

May 16, 2014 at 2:01pm

I haven't seen any posts here regarding anyone being checked for red snapper, but it seems like the Feds are patrolling the 3-mile limit writing people up. The biggest surprise to me is the state game wardens patrolling offshore and checking for red snapper. I would have thought they would not have done anything to discourage fisherman, based on their position of the ruling on the season and the assessment of the stock. Seems kind of crazy that the state would open the season 365 days in response to the ruling, but yet send a bunch of boats offshore to write tickets.

April 29, 2014 at 11:41am

'Don't start making plans to fish for red snapper in October just yet.

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council's Reef Fish Committee heard Tuesday that recreational catch estimates generated by new data-collection methods far exceeded the sector's 2013 quota during the 28-day June season.

The new data-collection methods were implemented as part of the Marine Recreational Information Program.

The uncertainty surrounding the exact cause of the overrun - the new methodology or actual changes in fishermen's habits - now has a fall season shrouded under a cloud of doubt.

'The preliminary estimates indicate the catch in June was higher than anticipated,' said National Marine Fisheries Service Southeast Regional Office Administrator Roy Crabtree. 'What we have to do is try to figure out if the increased catch was a function of the change in methodology or an actual change in the fishery.'

Crabtree said scientists believe the change in methodology may be doing a better job of reflecting the total catch since federal landings estimates from Louisiana found with the new data are similar to estimates generated by the state.'

More here:

August 28, 2013 at 10:31am

Has anyone fished or found the rip out of GI or Fourchon recently. Was wondering how far out or blocks it is running through before I ran out blindly trying to find it if it is 90 miles offshore. Any response would be greatly appreciated.

June 19, 2013 at 1:36pm

Everyone fishing offshore, I think we should make it a habit of posting reports of getting checked for snapper or accounts of others getting checked. This will be a great tool in keeping those of us fishing out of trouble. I fished this weekend out of Grand Isle and felt like a moonshiner. We left around noon and were back for 5:00. No coast guard in site, but I did come back perpendicular to the center of the island and headed west to Camanada when I was at the 3 mile mark.

April 01, 2013 at 2:41pm

With all of this confusion about the red snapper season and where state waters are or or not, who will actually be responsible for the Federal Enforcement if LDWF will allow fishing to the 10 mile limit during the season??? LDWF is cautioning us that we can still be checked and sited outside of the 3 mile boundary. Who would be enforcing this??? NOAA Fisheries, Coast Guard, US Fish and Wildlife, all 3??? I have to say, I have never been checked by anyone other than LDWF at the dock or offshore. Thanks for any input. Don't quite know if I should be excited about the upcoming season or depressed because there will not be a season. Also, how will people to the West of Grand Isle even fish for red snapper? I have never caught anything in less than 80' of water.

March 06, 2013 at 1:33pm
A comment titled: Re: Halo Wreck Site in response to a report titled: Halo Wreck Site

Hey Captain Paul, the info you gave me is from the NOAA Charts, which is incorrect. This is the ST 130 block in about 150' of water. For some reason, when they made the discovery of the exact location, they did not correct the charts, nor did they publish the location information. I sent a message to Robert Church and he said they have a non disclosure agreement with MMS to not release the information. I done so much research on this and have come up empty on the location, other than it is in about 470' of water in the GI 114 block.

December 21, 2015 at 1:39pm
A comment titled: Re: Sailfish in Grand Isle Blocks in response to a report titled: Sailfish in Grand Isle Blocks

We were slow bumping small hard tails and small mullet. These fish all went for live bait.

November 03, 2015 at 9:22am
A comment titled: Some Clarification in response to a report titled: Attention Snapper Charter Captains

Basically what this means is that 75% of the total allowable catch will be granted to certain individuals for their use, whether it be to harvest fish to sell, charge someone for the opportunity to harvest a fish, or sell that portion of their share of the quota for someone else to harvest. Since maximum shares of this resource are quantified and distributed for use at the shareholders leisure, these shares become commodities with demand. The demand for these commodities will be proportional the amount distributed yearly. Basically, to catch a red snapper in the GOM, you will have to pay a commercial to take you, pay a charter to take you (to which he will charge you to catch your single snapper), or pay a charter who has a catch share to come on your boat so you can catch a snapper. End the end, there will be absolute accounting on the commercial side, because every pound of snapper sold is reported (if legally caught and sold) and every charter with a catch share will have to report every time a fish is harvested. This makes the feds life easy as they have no accurate way of accounting for the recreational catch. On the flip side, it is highly likely that the Gulf Management Council determines that the recreational quota is caught during the state season, eliminating the federal recreational season all together. This is not the GMC's fault, but a direct directive of the judge's ruling from the suit brought forth by the Environmental Defense Fund and the Commercial sector. The judges ruling changed everything.

October 24, 2014 at 1:30pm
A comment titled: Showed My Support in response to a report titled: Red Snapper Amendment 40

I was there and brought 3 guys who usually fish with me. We were well represented with great comments. Kind of funny how most of the guys who showed up who are for the amendment were from Alabama. I think only Steve Tomeny and Joe Macaluso where the only 2 from the state who supported Amendment 40.

August 19, 2014 at 11:24am
A comment titled: Gulf Management Council Meeting in response to a report titled: Red Snapper War Continues

Mike, what happened at the last Gulf Management Council meeting 2 weeks ago??? Nothing has been reported. Seems like, until there are changes in the MS Act, we will be left with 1-2 week seasons. The judge's ruling really handcuffed the council. It is impossible to collect enough data in that short of a time to determine how much fish is actually harvested. Very little data means large margins of error. On top of that, they have to apply a large buffer to ensure there is know way the calculation model will show fisherman caught above their quota. The analysis is only as good as the quality and amount of data collected. Fact of the matter is, I am not sure what the increase in quota would do to lengthening the season. Not sure who quoted this, but trying to assess how much fish was harvested and health of the stock in 9 days is like taking a national poll by questioning 5 people. The data is so limited, it is worthless.

July 07, 2014 at 11:34am
A comment titled: Pathetic in response to a report titled: Red Snapper Update - Gulf Council

This is sickening. Just when you think things are getting better, we will have the worst season in the history of the fishery. I am thinking only an act of congress will change this mess. We now have a judge appointed by Jimmy Carter, setting the season for recreational fisherman because 'everyone deserves access to fresh fish'. I won't even get into the fact that only a select number of commercial fisherman receive a permit to commercially harvest the resource for basically nothing. This means the government is giving select individuals an allocation of the resource. Also, this permit that was given to these select individuals can trade these permits for monetary value, because there is a demand for this resource. They are profiting from something that is given to them as a special privilege by the government. All while we spend hundreds of dollars at the opportunity to catch a couple of fish for a short time. Sickening.

April 10, 2014 at 10:38am
A comment titled: From Times Picayune in response to a report titled: Red Snapper Update - Gulf Council

April 09, 2014 at 11:29am
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