Where are the lobsters: This weekend is between the legal dates to take Florida spiny lobsters. The two-day Sportsman's Mini-Season was Wednesday and Thursday, but the regular season doesn't open until this Thursday. For the mini-season, divers in the Upper Keys found more legal lobsters on the Atlantic side than the backside. Farther down the Keys, the larger concentrations were found on both sides. Lobster in the Gulf of Mexico are few but big.
Join a group for a Keys dive: If you're a certified diver and you would like to try your hand at lobstering while enjoying some great diving, join a group of experienced lobster divers heading to the Keys. We always take a group to Key Largo for the first weekend of the regular season. Dive the clear waters looking for lobsters, taking photos and enjoying the underwater life. Check out your local dive shops to see if they are running one of these trips. Diving with a group makes it fun and easier to learn which hunting tactics work best.
Tournament news: The 44th St. Pete Open is scheduled for Aug. 14-16 at the Holiday Inn Sunspree in St. Petersburg. There is still plenty of time to register early and get the discounted rate. Go to stpeteopen.com to find out more.
Bill Hardman teaches scuba, spearfishing and freediving classes at Aquatic Obsessions, 6193 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, 33710. You can reach him at (727) 344-DIVE (3483) or at firstname.lastname@example.org.