Tiger shark, hammerhead prohibitions start Jan. 1

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The recreational and commercial harvest of tiger sharks and smooth, scalloped and great hammerhead sharks will be prohibited in Florida state waters beginning Jan. 1. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission approved the management change at its Nov. 16 commission meeting in an effort to further protect these top predators.

The new measures also prohibit the possession, sale and exchange of tiger sharks and great, scalloped and smooth hammerhead sharks harvested from state waters. These sharks can still be caught and released in state waters and can be taken in adjacent federal waters. Prohibited species that die while on the line after being caught in state waters should be returned to the water immediately.

The FWC is also working on an educational campaign highlighting fishing and handling techniques that increase the survival rate of sharks that are caught and released while ensuring the safety of the anglers targeting them.

For information on shark fishing, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click on “Saltwater Fishing” and either “Recreational Regulations” or “Commercial.”