Permit Pompano Collage

Florida Pompano: Trachinotus carolinus

African Pompano: Alectis ciliaris

Permit: Trachinotus falcatus


Florida Regulations:

Regulations Florida Pompano African Pompano Permit inside SPZ (see map below) Permit, all other state and federal waters
Minimum Size Limit 11" fork length  24" fork length 22" fork length Not less than 11" or more than 22" fork length
Daily Bag Limit 6 per harvester per day 2 per harvester per day  1 per harvester per day 2 per harvester per day
Season  None  None Closed May 1 - July 31 None
Gear Hook and line, cast net and beach or haul seine

State waters:  Hook and line only.

Federal waters:  Hook and line and spearing

Remarks   Vessel limit: no more than 2  per vessel

May possess 1 over 22" included in the per person bag limit

Vessel limit:  no more than 2 over 22" per vessel

*The recreational regulations in the chart above apply in Florida state and federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic unless otherwise noted.


Special Permit Zone (SPZ)

(South of Cape Florida and Cape Sable)

Pompano Endorsement Zone


The Special Permit Zone includes state and federal waters south of Cape Florida in the Atlantic and south of Cape Sable in the Gulf.

The Pompano Endorsement Zone (PEZ) pictured on the map above is a zone created that allows commercial fishermen who hold a pompano endorsement (PE) to use gill nets legally for pompano in federal waters off Florida.

State Waters Harvest Seasons

Habitat and Fishing Tips:

Florida pompano: Florida pompano are common in inshore and nearshore waters, especially along sandy beaches, along oyster banks, and over grassbeds. They are often in turbid water and may be found in water as deep as 130 feet. Florida pompano feed on mollusks and crustaceans, especially sand fleas. Local movements are influenced by the tide, and seasonal movements are influenced by temperature.

Permit: These coastal fish inhabit tropical grass and sand flats, near reefs and wrecks. Permit have a specialized plate at the back of their mouth that helps them crush hard-shelled animals such as clams and crabs. Anglers cast live crabs to schools of permit hoping to catch one of these line-stripping fish, which also take shrimp, clams and occasionally small fish. Permit are most common in south Florida. This member of the jack family can reach 40 inches and 50 pounds, but most are about 25-pounds.

State Record:

Florida Pompano: 8 lb 4 oz, caught near Port St. Joe

Permit: 56 lb 2 oz, caught near Ft. Lauderdale