Harvesting Conch

Discussion in 'Deep Dixie Divers' started by Hetland, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. Hetland

    Hetland Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Gulf of Mexico
    2,659
    371
    0
    Harvesting Conch.... Anyone here ever try it? I've spotted a few recently, and I'm tempted to try out a dish or two.

    Are there types to avoid?

    Do I need a license to harvest?

    Am I just wasting my time?
     
  2. mike_s

    mike_s Blue Whale

    20,027
    3,336
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    Conch taste great if prepared properly...... "Cracked Conch" is my favorite, but conch salad is good, so are fritters.

    just make sure you tenderize it. I mean alot.


    I don't know if a license is required or not. Is this in Florida or Alabama waters? I doubt alabama has any rules on conch, but Florida might. (or federal laws might cover alabama).

    (I'm surprised there are even conch in Alabama waters...)

    EDIT...

    Looks like the Queen Conch is restricted.

    from FWC Recreational Sea Shell Collecting Information\
    Recreational Shellfish Harvesting Information

    Prohibited Species: All harvest of the Bahama Starfish (Oreaster reticulatis) is prohibited. Possession of live Queen Conch (Strombus gigas) at any time is prohibited. It is not unlawful to possess queen conch shells in Florida as long as the shells do not contain any living queen conch at the time of collection, and so long as a living queen conch is not killed, mutilated, or removed from its shell prior to collection. Possession of conch meat or a queen conch shell having an off-center hole larger than 1/16 inch in diameter through its spire is prohibited.



    from http://myfwc.com/codebook/2005/pdf/Pg_450.pdf


    68B-16.003. Queen Conch, Regulation.
    (1) No person shall take or harvest any
    queen conch from the land or waters of the
    State of Florida, or possess, transport, or land
    any queen conch, wherever harvested, except
    as provided in subsections (3), (4), and (5) below.
    (2) No person shall kill, molest, harm, or
    mutilate any queen conch anywhere within the
    borders of the State of Florida.
    (3) The provisions of this chapter shall not
    be applicable to queen conch imported from
    another country; provided, however, that any
    wholesale or retail dealer in queen conch meat,
    queen conch shells or products made from
    queen conch shells shall maintain invoices,
    receipts, bills of sale, bills of lading, or other
    documentation affirmatively showing that all
    queen conch meat, queen conch shells or parts
    of queen conch shells in such dealer’s inventory
    were imported from a foreign country.
    (4) In accordance with Section 370.10(2),
    F.S., the Commission may issue permits to
    collect and possess queen conch for experimental,
    scientific and exhibitional purposes.
    (5) It is not unlawful for any person to take
    or possess queen conch shells from the land or
    waters of the State of Florida, so long as such
    shells do not contain any living queen conch at
    the time of taking, and so long as a living
    queen conch is not killed, mutilated, or removed
    from its shell prior to taking such shell;
    provided further, that possession by any person,
    while in or on the waters of the State of
    Florida, of conch meat or of any queen conch
    shell having an off-center hole larger than 1/16
    inch in diameter through its spire shall constitute
    a violation of this chapter.
    (6) The presence of queen conch aboard a
    vessel in, on or above the waters of the State of
    Florida, while one or more persons from such
    vessel are overboard, shall constitute prima
    facie evidence that such queen conch were
    harvested from state waters in violation of this
    chapter.
    (7) Any queen conch which is accidentally
    caught during the course of other lawful fishing
    activity shall not be deemed to be taken,
    harvested, possessed or molested in violation
    of this chapter, so long as such queen conch is
    returned immediately to the water, unharmed.
    Specific Authority Art. IV, Sec. 9, Fla. Const. Law Implemented
    Art. IV, Sec. 9, Fla. Const. History–New 6-17-85,
    Amended 6-21-90, 7-15-96, Formerly 46-16.003.

    68B-16.005. Queen Conch, Regulation in
    Federal Waters Contiguous to Florida.

    The prohibitions and presumptions contained
    in section 68B-16.003 of this chapter,
    relating to the taking, harvesting, possessing,
    transporting, killing, molesting, harming
    and/or mutilating of queen conch within the
    State of Florida, apply as well to persons
    aboard Florida registered vessels while in the
    Fisheries Conservation Zone (FCZ) of the
    United States directly contiguous to Florida
    waters.
    Specific Authority Art. IV, Sec. 9, Fla. Const. Law Implemented
    Art. IV, Sec. 9, Fla. Const. History–New 12-11-86,
    Formerly 46-16.005.​


    Found this on the Alabama Dept of Conservation site about Marine Fisheries...
    from http://www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/saltwater/regulations/fed-rec-regs.pdf

    page 17
    Marine Sanctuaries and Area Closures continued
    Injury to or Possession of Sanctuary Resources
    The following activities are prohibited:
    • Injuring or removing, or attempting to injure or remove, any coral or other
    bottom formation, coralline algae or other plant, marine invertebrate (e.g.,
    spiny lobster, queen conch, shell, sea urchin), brine-seep biota or carbonate
    rock.​



    Conch aren't listed at all in the Alabama Dept Conservation Rish and Game regulations
    http://www.outdooralabama.com/hunting/regulations/2007-2008RegBook-Final.pdf
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2008
  3. Hetland

    Hetland Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Gulf of Mexico
    2,659
    371
    0
    Thanks for the info Mike. I was pretty sure that the queens were off limits anyway. I've yet to notice any "eating-size" conchs in Alabama waters, but I have seen them very, very close to Alabama waters in Florida, so I'm sure there's some overlap somewhere. I'll post if I ever get around to trying it, and let you guys know how it turns out.
     
  4. DennisS

    DennisS Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Sebastian, FL
    4,110
    443
    83
    The decline in the queen conch population was amazing. In the early seventies they were everywhere on the grass flats of south florida. I'd always grab a couple on every dive, I love conch. I wasn't alone, lots of other people liked the conch meat and shells, by the mid 1980's' they were pretty much gone. It's good to see they are starting to make a comeback due to restocking efforts and regulations.
     
  5. Bratface

    Bratface Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: St Thomas, VI
    1,597
    185
    63
    You can't take them or even touch them in Florida. I don't eat them, just don't like the taste or texture.
     

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