After requesting that the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR) modify the state’s red drum (or redfish) regulations earlier this year, the Georgia Saltwater Anglers Association is hoping the DNR will consider their pleas and arguments, as well as those from many concerned anglers. For a quick brush up on what the Georgia Saltwater Anglers Association is trying to accomplish, check out this story from earlier this year.
The Georgia DNR announced that it would be changing the red drum regulations and scheduled two public hearings this week: one in Savannah, Georgia on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, and another in Brunswick, Georgia on Thursday, September 22, 2022, each at 6:00 PM. The Brunswick meeting will also include virtual access for those who cannot attend in person. In addition, written public comment will be received through Thursday, October 6, 2022.
The Georgia Saltwater Anglers Association sounded the alarm on their red drum because they are seeing a declining fishery with more effort and participation, but the regulations haven’t changed. Also, other coastal states have far more conservative red drum regulations than Georgia’s. Thankfully, Georgia DNR has recommended a suite of regulatory options, which the GSAA is supporting: three-fish daily limit per person, a maximum limit of nine red drum per vessel, and a no-harvest rule for Captains.
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“With a lack of regulation change in over 20 years and over a 500% increase in anglers in that same time frame along with what our anglers and captains are seeing on the water we know it’s time for change,” said Captain Chad DuBose of the Georgia Saltwater Anglers Association. “We’re both appreciative and supportive of the recommended regulatory changes put forward by Georgia DNR.”
If you are a Georgia angler or anyone who care about the state’s coastal redfish fishery being sustainable and opportunity rich, be sure to make it to the hearings or submit an online public comment, and also support the Georgia Saltwater Anglers Association.