The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’(ADCNR) Marine Resources Division (MRD) will close the state’s 2021 private angler red snapper fishing season at midnight on Monday, December 27. Alabama’s 2021 federal allocation of red snapper was 1.12 million pounds. Anglers harvested nearly 1 million pounds during the 124-day season.
“Every year we see a variety of factors impacting the effort in this fishery,” said Scott Bannon, MRD Director. “Those factors influence the number of days Alabama is open to fishing for red snapper. The relaxing of COVID-19 restrictions and fewer adverse weather events during the summer provided anglers with more opportunities to participate in the season. This was our fourth year under state management of the season. Because of that we were able to provide access to the quota until the end of the year. That’s due in large part to anglers reporting their red snapper harvests through Snapper Check.”
Under the rules that established state management of private angler red snapper fishing for the five Gulf States, there is no provision allowing for the carryover of any unfished quota into the following year. NOAA Fisheries will soon announce the number of pounds available to Alabama anglers for the 2022 season. MRD will set the season dates when that number is available.
“It has been a good, long red snapper season in Alabama this year,” said Chris Blankenship, ADCNR Commissioner. “Under Alabama state management, we were able to provide maximum access in 2021. It was good to see catches of big red snapper throughout the summer and fall months. ADCNR will continue fighting to ensure our citizens and visitors have access to the incredible red snapper fishery off the coast of Alabama.”
Additional red snapper landing information from the 2019-2021 seasons is available at www.outdooralabama.com/2021-red-snapper-landings-summary.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through four divisions: Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com.
Photo by David Rainer, ADCNR