BREVARD COUNTY, FL.
– A new Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) ruling went into effect on March 1, 2023. Under this new regulation, all recreational crab traps in Florida must have a funnel opening of 6” x 2” or a Bycatch Reduction Device (BRD) to make the funnel opening 6” x 2”. The main goal of this ruling is to prevent diamondback terrapin turtles from getting into crab traps and drowning.
To help make the transition smoother, Florida Sea Grant is offering free Bycatch Reduction Devices for recreational crab traps at select UF/IFAS Extension Offices across the state. These devices will be available at the Brevard County Extension office during regular business hours. They are also available at the Titusville FWC office (1 A Max Brewer Memorial Parkway, Titusville, FL 32796). Contact Marina Barrineau at Marina.Barrineau@MyFWC.com
or (850) 294-8214 for more information on pickup at the Titusville FWC location.
Recreational crab fishers can pick up BRDs from the Master Gardener Desk at the UF/IFAS Extension Office in Cocoa (3695 Lake Drive, Cocoa, FL 32926), open Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or on Thursdays at the Brevard County Farmers Market starting March 9, from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. (2500 Parkway Drive, Melbourne, FL 32935). You will also receive a fact sheet about terrapin turtles and will be able to leave your contact information for a follow-up survey.
If you have any questions, please call Holly Abeels, Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent, at (321) 633-1702 x52333 or email Habeels@UFL.edu
. To learn more about the regulation, visit the FWC website
. To learn more about terrapin turtles and BRDs, watch this Florida Sea Grant video
The University of Florida is committed to providing universal access to all of our events. For disability accommodations such as alternate formats of written material, please contact the UF/IFAS Brevard County Extension Office at Brevard@IFAS.UFL.edu
or (321) 633-1702 at least 2 weeks in advance.