CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- The highly anticipated red snapper season is set to open on Friday in federal waters in the South Atlantic, according to new guidance from NOAA Fisheries.

The recreational season will open on July 8 at 12:01 a.m. and close at 12:01 a.m. on July 10. Recreational fishermen are only permitted to keep one snapper per day during that time frame.

The commercial season opens at 12:01 a.m. on July 11 and remains open until 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2023, unless the annual catch limit is met or projected to be met before that date.

There are no minimum or maximum size limits for the recreational or commercial sectors.

The total annual catch limit for red snapper is 42,510 fish of which 29,565 fish are allotted for recreational fishermen. For commercial vessels, the annual catch limit is 124,815 pounds which is equivalent to roughly 12,854 fish. The commercial trip limit is 75 pounds gutted weight.

To determine the length of the recreational season, NOAA Fisheries used catch rate estimates from the previous three years. Catch rate estimates were taken from red snapper-specific surveys conducted by South Atlantic states the Marine Recreational Information Program and the Southeast Heaboat Survey.

This year’s recreational season was shortened by one day to reduce the likelihood of overfishing. During the 3-day window in 2021, the catch limit is estimated to have been exceeded by more than 9,000 fish.

For more information on red snapper season contact NOAA Sustainable Fisheries at 727-824-5305.