South Floridians take part in day 1 of lobster mini-season

KEY BISCAYNE, FLA. (WSVN) - After lobster mini-season started at midnight Wednesday, South Floridians took to the water to participate in the highly anticipated annual event.

7News cameras captured a packed Crandon Park Marina in the early morning hours, as boaters took their family members and friends to capture their own lobsters.

“I enjoy doing it, and my friends enjoy it like me too,” said one boater.

Some mini-season participants said it’s a tradition they do not want to miss out on.

“This is like a rite of passage. We always try to bring the little ones on board, teach them and enjoy the day with them,” said another participant. “It’s something we grew up doing. We always did it, and it’s a day we always mark on the calendar. We just do it every year.”

“I’ve been doing this my whole life, like the last 30 something years,” said boater Danilo Ramirez.

Ramirez brought his son along to teach him how to properly catch his own lobsters.

“He’s 10 years old, first time we’re heading out. We’re going to go bully netting there in the bay,” said Ramirez. “He’s got a limit of 12, and I’ve got a limit of 12, so hopefully these storms stay away. He’s staying safe number one, having fun. Right, Andres?”

“Yeah,” said his son.

Officials reminded fishermen of the rules surrounding the two-day event on Tuesday.

Bags in Monroe County and Biscayne National Park are limited to six lobsters per person per day.

For the rest of Florida, fishermen are able to capture 12 lobsters per person, per day.

Officials said the carapace must be longer than three inches and measured in the water.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials urge boaters to check their safety equipment and have a plan of action before heading out to the water.

Lobster mini-season officially ends at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday.

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