Recreational Spiny Lobster Season Opens on Oct. 2

CALIFORNIA一 Recreational spiny lobster season will open on Oct. 2 at 6 a.m. and will continue through March 16, 2022.

Regulations prohibit taking lobster before 6 a.m. including baiting your hoop net or grabbing lobsters prior to 6 a.m.

“No one can attempt to take lobster prior to 6 a.m. on Oct. 2. This includes baiting your hoop net or grabbing lobsters with your hand prior to 6 a.m.,” said California Department of Fish and Wildlife Captain Eric Kord in a CDFW press release. “With a sunrise around 6:45 a.m. on the morning of the opener, that means there will be a very short window of time to legally take lobster in the dark when most lobsters are out.”

Individuals 16 and older are required to have a lobster report card, a valid sport fishing license, and an ocean enhancement stamp.

Hoop netters and divers will have to fill out the date, location, and gear type prior to fishing.

After anglers are done fishing or have changed locations, they will need to record the number of lobsters kept from that location.

Lobster report cards will have to be submitted online to the CDFW at the end of the season by April 30, regardless of whether the card was used or any lobsters were caught.

Anglers can purchase another lobster report card if their card is full, but all anglers must report each lobster that is caught. Failure to report all lobster report cards will result in a non-reporting fee of $21.60.

Lobster cards can be purchased online at

Report cards cannot be printed at home. The CDFW recommends allowing for a 15-day period for the report card to be mailed.

Anglers can also purchase a lobster report card at participating sporting goods stores.

The daily lobster bag and possession limit is seven, and lobsters have to be at least three-and-a-quarter inches long measured in a straight line on the midline of the back from the rear edge of the eye socket to the rear edge of the body shell.

Lobsters can only be taken with hoop nets or by hand, and no more than five hoop nets can be possessed by a person taking spiny lobster, and no more than 10 hoop nets may be possessed aboard a vessel regardless of how many people are on board.

Only two hoop nets can be used when using hoop nets on a pier, jetty, or other shore-based structures.

Anglers should be sure they are not fishing in prohibited waters by checking the Ocean Sport Fishing Interactive Web Map.

The complete regulations are available in the 2021-22 Ocean Sport Fishing Regulations booklet.

3 thoughts on “Recreational Spiny Lobster Season Opens on Oct. 2

  • October 3, 2021 at 7:29 pm

    You might want to change the image used in this article to one of a spiny lobster, since that is the subject of the article

    • October 13, 2021 at 10:39 am

      Thank you for your comment. The photo has been removed for its inaccuracy.

  • May 14, 2022 at 10:10 pm

    Do you need to purchase two fishing licenses for the whole season? One for each year that a season spans?



Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *