recreational fishing

Suzana Blake / NOAA Fisheries

Hurricane Irma cost Florida's fishing industries almost $200 million, according to a damage assessment released by the state and federal governments.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

  Billy Causey has been in the Florida Keys since the early 1970s. And in that time, he's figured out a few things.

"There's some things you learn not to talk about. You know — religion, politics ... and mini-season," Causey said. "You don't go to a party in the Keys and talk about any one of those three."

FWC

  Hogfish, an orange fish in the wrasse family, may be ugly but they're increasingly popular in the Florida Keys.

That's especially true for people who spearfish, like Lea Moeller of Key West.

"It's one of the only fish that's slow enough for me to shoot," Moeller said. "But it's also delicious."

The number of hogfish caught in federal waters of the Atlantic Ocean last year increased so sharply that the recreational season was closed in August for the first time ever.