29” min carcass length or 33 lbs. min dressed weight
5 per vessel per trip
Highly Migratory Species: All owners/operators of vessels fishing recreationally for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) in the Atlantic Ocean, including the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea, must obtain an Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) permit. Similar to Atlantic tunas permits, 2010 Atlantic HMS permits will be valid from the date of issuance through December 31, 2010.
Federal regulations currently require a federal HMS angling permit for all owners/operators of recreational vessels fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) in the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Those regulations also require an Atlantic HMS Charter/ Headboat permit for all charter or headboat fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic HMS in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. For information contact the National Marine Fisheries Service Permitting Office at 1-888-USATUNA (1-888-872-8862) or visit NMFS Permit Shop at: http://www . nmfspermits.com/initialapp.asp.
Recreational tournament operators: A person conducting a tournament involving scorekeeping or awards for highly migratory species including Atlantic billfish, swordfish, tuna and sharks (whether or not retained), must register with the NOAA Fisheries Permit Office, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL, 33701 or by FAX to 727-824- 5398. The registration must be in writing, at least four weeks prior to commencement of tournament fishing. A tournament registration form is available upon request from the above address or can be requested by FAX to 727-824-5398. NOTE: Federal regulations currently require registration of all fishing tournaments involving the catch and/or landing of any HMS in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Swordfish: Recreational fishing vessels shall not possess more than five swordfish per vessel per trip. Swordfish taken under a recreational bag limit shall not be sold, purchased, exchanged, bartered, or attempted to be sold, purchased, exchanged or bartered. No person aboard any vessel shall transfer or cause the transfer of swordfish between vessels on state or federal waters.