The Florida Wildlife Commission wants to hear from anglers about saltwater fishing in Florida
FWC researchers want to learn your saltwater fishing experiences and opinions through the new online Florida Saltwater Fishing Panel.
Anyone with a valid Florida saltwater fishing license or Persons with Disabilities Resident Hunting and Fishing License, as well as exempt residents age 65 and older, can sign up to take part in the panel.
Registered panel members will be asked to complete one web-based survey per month for one year. The surveys will each take approximately 10 to 15 minutes to complete.
Most surveys will focus on the angler's last saltwater fishing trip in Florida during the previous month, but may also include questions about fishing regulations, licenses, conservation of fish stocks and management effectiveness.
FWC researchers will use survey data to estimate the economic impact and value of saltwater fishing in Florida, assess the importance of fish hatcheries, estimate fishing effort-and-catch rates and describe angler behavior.
Information from panelists will be taken into consideration as part of FWC management and policy-making decisions.
Panel members will receive a coupon from West Marine for each monthly survey completed. Participants can also review survey results.
More than 200,000 anglers who provided e-mail addresses when they purchased their licenses have received e-mails asking them to register for the panel. Licensed anglers who have not received an e-mail can sign up at fwcsaltwaterfishingpanel.com, by clicking "Register for the Panel."
Anglers must register by Aug. 20 to receive the September survey. However, new members will be accepted throughout the duration of the panel's operation.
As the panel is fully web-based, panel members must have Internet access and a current e-mail address.