The Florida spiny lobster season for 2016-17 ends the last day of the month. In the Gulf of Mexico, this has been one of the best spiny lobster seasons for many years. The season started in July and divers are still finding lobsters hiding in potholes and ledges in the eastern gulf. Most lobsters have been located in depths from 35 to 70 feet. The spiny lobsters we find in the eastern gulf usually exceed the legal minimum size. Gulf lobsters have traveled a long way from their southern beginnings. As they move north, they eat and grow. I have never caught a lobster north of Venice that was under legal size. The lobsters grow bigger up here but are few and far between. The two-day lobster miniseason openings back up on the last consecutive Wednesday and Thursday of July. Many divers are already planning for the opening day of the 2017 two-day miniseason. Check with local shops for specials.
Bill Hardman teaches scuba, spearfishing and free diving through Aquatic Obsessions Scuba in St. Petersburg and can be reached at (727) 344-3483 and firstname.lastname@example.org.