Shark Fishing Regulations:
1 shark per person per day.
2 sharks per vessel – this means that the maximum number of sharks that can be retained from a vessel is two sharks, even if more than two anglers are on board.
harvestable sharks fall into these three groups based on their size limit
Group 1 sharks (8 species) have no minimum size limit and include:
- Atlantic Sharpnose
- Smooth dogfish
- Florida smoothhound
- Gulf smoothhound
Group 2 sharks (7 species) have a 54 inch (fork length) minimum size limit and include:
- Oceanic whitetip
- Thresher (common)
Sharks that are prohibited from harvest in state waters include:
- Atlantic angel (Squatina dumeril)
- Basking (Cetorhinus maximus)
- Bigeye sand tiger (Odontaspis noronhai)
- Bigeye sixgill (Hexanchus nakamurai)
- Bigeye thresher (Alopias vulpinus)
- Bignose (Carcharhinus altimus)
- Caribbean reef (Carcharhinus perezii)
- Caribbean sharpnose shark (Rhizoprionodon porosus)
- Dusky (Carcharhinus obscurus)
- Galapagos (Carcharhinus galapagensis)
- Great hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran)
- Lemon shark (Negaprion brevirostris)
- Longfin mako (Isurus paucus)
- Narrowtooth (Carcharhinus brachyurus)
- Night (Carcharhinus signatus)
- Sandbar (Carcharhinus plumbeus)
- Sand tiger (Odontaspis taurus)
- Scalloped hammerhead (Sphryna lewini)
- Sevengill (Heptranchias perlo)
- Shortfin mako (Isurus oxyrinchus)
- Silky (Carcharhinus falciformis)
- Sixgill shark (Hexanchus griseus)
- Smalltail (Carcharhinus porosus)
- Smooth hammerhead (Sphyrna zygaena)
- Spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias)
- Tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier)
- Whale (Rhincodon typus)
- White (Carcharodon carcharias)
Prohibited shark species must remain in the water with the gills submerged when fishing from shore or from a vessel, and prohibited shark species must be released without delay when fishing from the shore. If hook removal will delay release, cut the hook or the leader as close to the hook as possible.
Shore-based Shark Fishing
If you plan to target or keep sharks caught from shore, including structures attached to shore such as jetties, bridges and piers, you are required to pass an online educational course found at MyFWC.com/SharkCourse.
Once completed, you will be prompted to go to FWC’s online licensing system, where you will need to get the no-cost, Shore-based Shark Fishing permit (must be renewed annually). You are not required to have this permit if you are fishing for sharks from a vessel.
The permit is required for all shore-based shark anglers age 16 and older, including those 65 and older who are normally exempt from needing a fishing license.
The permit is also required if you are 16 and older and plan to fish from shore for any species of fish and will be:
- Fishing with a metal leader more than 4 feet long,
- Using a fighting belt/harness, or
- Deploying bait by any means other than casting (kayaking for example) while using a hook that is 1 ½ inches or larger at the widest inside distance.
Anglers younger than 16 are not required to obtain the permit but are required to take the online educational course unless they are fishing with someone else who holds a Shore-based Shark Fishing permit.