Gulf Stock Characteristics

SEDAR 37, 2014

Natural mortality rate (M): 0.179/year (max age of 25 years)

Reproductive maturity: 50% are sexually mature

  • Females: ~172 mm (6.8 in) fork length (FL); 1.25 years
  • Males: ~426 mm (16.8 in) FL; 6.5 years

Maximum age: 23 years

Maximum weight: ~11 kg (24.3 lbs) whole weight

Maximum length: ~91 cm (35.8 in) FL

Discard mortality: 10% hook-and-line; 100% spear

Current Federal Regulations:

Quota:

Stock ACL – 141,300 pounds

Recreational:

  • Fishing season: Year round, if the sum of commercial and recreational landings meet the stock ACL then, during the following fishing if the sum of landings is projected to reach the stock ACL then harvest will be prohibited for the remainder of the year.
  • Minimum Size Limit: 14 inches fork length
  • Bag Limit: 5 per person
  • Permit/License: Permit/License: Permit/License: State issued recreational license or Federal charter/headboat permit for reef fish
  • Gear: Non-stainless steel circle hooks are required when fishing with natural baits. At least one dehooking device is required and must be used to remove hooks.

Commercial:

  • Fishing season:  Year round, if the sum of commercial and recreational landings meet the stock ACL then, during the following fishing if the sum of landings is projected to reach the stock ACL then harvest will be prohibited for the remainder of the year.
  • Minimum Size Limit: 14 inches fork length
  • Trip Limit:  None
  • Permit:  Commercial vessel permit for reef fish is required. Additionally, an eastern Gulf reef fish bottom longline endorsement required to use bottom longline for Gulf reef fish in the federal waters east of 85°30′ longitude.
  • Gear:  Non-stainless steel circle hooks are required when fishing with natural baits. At least one dehooking device is required and must be used to remove hooks.

Hogfish Boundary Map

 

Note:  Regulations specific to Gulf of Mexico hogfish management zone. Florida Keys hogfish are managed by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council

Description:

Hogfish, or sometimes “hog snapper,” are actually a member of the wrasse family (Labridae).  They boast bright orange, yellow, and blueish-purple colorations.  Hogfish get their name from their elongated snout, which they use to root for crustaceans buried in the sediment.  Their tail is moon-shaped. Males have a characteristic black spot behind their pectoral fins.  Three stocks of hogfish are found in the southeastern US:  the Gulf of Mexico stock, the Florida Keys/East Florida stock, and the Georgia to North Carolina stock.  The Gulf stock occupies the west Florida continental shelf south to about Cape Sable (SEDAR 37, 2014).

Life History and Distribution:

Hogfish occur in tropical, subtropical and warm temperate waters from Brazil north to Bermuda, and throughout the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea.  Hogfish are protogynous hermaphrodites, beginning life as females and begin changing sex to male at ~14 inches FL.  All fish older than 10 years are thought to be male and sex changes are socially mediated.  After a planktonic larval phase (~35 days), juveniles settle nearshore in estuaries, seagrass beds or shallow reefs, and gradually move offshore with growth.  Adults are often reef-associated (SEDAR 37, 2014).

Landings Summary