The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) at its April meeting near Tallahassee established a commercial daily trip and vessel limit of 200 sea cucumbers in both state and federal waters. This change will go into effect June 1.
The rapid, unregulated development of sea cucumber export fisheries elsewhere in the world has led to fishery collapses and sea cucumber depletions. Sea cucumbers are vulnerable to overfishing due to their sedentary nature, and they are also ecologically important, as they help cycle nutrients in nutrient-poor tropical reefs and oxygenate sediments. More information about the issue is available in the “Sea Cucumber Presentation” link in the Commission meeting agenda. Go to MyFWC.com/Commission and click on “Commission Meetings” to pull up the agenda.