Louisiana Private Recreational Red Snapper Season to Open Friday, May 26, 2023


red snapper

The 2023 private recreational Red Snapper season will begin on Friday, May 26, 2023, in both state and federal waters. The season will run 7 days a week with a daily bag limit of three fish per person and a 16-inch total minimum length limit.

The season will remain open until recreational landings approach or reach Louisiana’s annual private recreational allocation of 934,587 pounds while attempting to preserve enough allocation for the Labor Day weekend.

LDWF also reminds anglers that Gray Triggerfish season will overlap the Red Snapper season on the opening Memorial Day weekend, but will be closed from June 1 through July 30, 2023.

Resident and Non-Resident Recreational Anglers:

  • Must possess valid Louisiana basic and Saltwater Recreational Fishing Licenses as well as a Recreational Offshore Landing Permit(free of charge) to fish for or possess Red Snapper, as well as other offshore species.
  • Anglers can get a ROLP via the ROLP website. Once you have registered, save an electronic copy on your mobile device or print a copy of your ROLP indicating your valid ROLP and carry it on your person along with applicable licenses while fishing offshore.
  • Anglers on a paid charter trip, do not need a ROLP, but a ROLP is required for Charter Captains.

State For-Hire Charter Vessels: 

  • State for-hire charter captains (those who do not have a federal Gulf of Mexico charter/headboat permit for reef fish) are not allowed to fish in federal waters.
  • Must also possess a Recreational Offshore Landing Permit (free of charge) to fish for or possess Red Snapper, as well as other offshore species.
  • May only fish for Red Snapper in state waters (within the 9 nautical mile state water boundary), when the Louisiana recreational Red Snapper season is open.

Federal For-Hire Charter Vessels: 

  • Vessels with federal reef fish for-hire permits will remain under federal regulations and may only fish during federally established seasons.
  • May only fish in federal waters during the federal for-hire season – Check the Gulf Council website for dates in the coming weeks.
  • If a federal for-hire charter captain also holds a Louisiana charter license, he/she may also fish state waters only when the federal for-hire charter season overlaps with the Louisiana season.

All recreational offshore anglers will be subject to periodic, random LA Creel dockside surveys and associated online and phone effort surveys, as has been the case since 2014 when LA Creel began. While these surveys are voluntary, we strongly urge your participation, as this will be the primary method for tracking harvest. The accuracy and reliability of harvest estimates depend on angler participation in LA Creel, so LDWF needs as many anglers as possible to complete both dockside and phone and email surveys.

Those who fish for Red Snapper will also have the option to electronically report their catch via the ROLP mobile and desktop version of the ROLP website. LDWF hopes that voluntary use of electronic reporting will provide the Department with a larger sample size than standard dockside and telephone sampling, possibly improving the quality of recreational landings data to make future management recommendations. . If you opt into voluntary electronic reporting, you may also be contacted to participate in LA Creel.

LDWF also encourages anglers to reduce barotrauma while fishing for Red Snapper and other reef fish by using descending devices to return fish to a survivable depth before being released.  Please see the LDWF website at https://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/page/barotrauma for more information.

For additional questions regarding the upcoming red snapper season or voluntary electronic reporting, please reference our FAQs.