Targeted Fish 🐟

Targeted Fish For Bowfishing:


Bowfin, Buffalo, Catfish, Common Carp, Bighead Carp, Grass Carp, Drum, Longnose Gar, Shortnose Gar, Shad, Spotted Gar.



Salt water-

Flounder, Sting Rays, Mullet, Needle Fish, Catfish, Sheephead, Skip Jack, and Spanish Mackerel

Fresh water-

Bowfin, Carp, Longnose Gar, Shortnose Gar, Catfish, Drum, and when permits are avalaible Grass Carp (White Armore).

Florida Bowfishing Rules:


Spearing is defined as “the catching or taking of a fish by bowhunting, gigging, spearfishing, or any device used to capture a fish by piercing its body.” Spearing does not include the catching or taking of a fish by a hook with hook and line gear or by snagging (snatch hooking).

Spearfishing is defined as:

“the catching or taking of a fish through the instrumentality of a hand or mechanically propelled, single or multi-pronged spear or lance, barbed or barbless, operated by a person swimming at or below the surface of the water.”

The use of powerheads, bangsticks, and rebreathers remains prohibited.

The following is a list of species which are PROHIBITED for harvest by spearing.


Any other species not listed which are managed by the Commission, and those not managed by the Commission are allowed to be harvested by spearing.

* Billfish (all species)

* Spotted eagle ray

* Sturgeon

* Manta ray

 * Sharks (all species)

* Bonefish

* Tarpon

* Goliath grouper

* Snook

* Blue crab

* Nassau grouper

* Spotted seatrout

* Red drum

* Weakfish

* Stone crab

* Pompano

* African pompano

* Permit

* Tripletail

* Lobster

* Families of ornamental reef fish (surgeonfish, trumpetfish, angelfish, butterflyfish, porcupinefish, cornetfish, squirrelfish, trunkfish, damselfish, parrotfish, pipefish, seahorse, puffers, triggerfish except gray and ocean:


Nongame Fish –

All freshwater fish not defined as game fish, except grass carp  


It is illegal to possess grass carp or alligator gar without a permit; these fish must be released immediately.

 It is illegal to possess any freshwater fish along with gear that cannot legally be used to take freshwater fish, including gear types listed above and below for taking nongame fish or bait.

Nongame fish May be taken:

At night by bow and arrow and gigs.

During daylight hours by manually operated spears, gigs, snatch hooks, crossbow, or bow and arrow from a boat or from shore Except at the spillways of Eureka and Rodman dams on the Oklawaha river or on the spillway of the Jim Woodruff Dam on the Apalachicola river or in the Dade County canals south of the C-4 and east of the L-31N and L-31W canals inclusively.

You may NOT spear, bowfish or gig:

In Volusia County inland waters with the exception of flounder and sheepshead using a spear with three or fewer prongs.

For species that do not have an established bag limit, more than 100 pounds or two fish per harvester per day (whichever is greater), is considered commercial quantities. A saltwater products license and commercial vessel registration is required to harvest commercial quantities of unregulated species. It is illegal to sell recreationally harvested fish without compliance with commercial license requirements

Licensing requirements follow the species of fish you are fishing for, regardless of where you are fishing. For example, anglers fishing for and possessing Gar, Carp, and Mudfish in brackish water need a freshwater license; anglers fishing for saltwater species in freshwater Flounder, Sheepshead, and Rays need a saltwater license to possess these species. Mullet are special and need a license for the water fished as the live in both freshwater and saltwater.

Fish identification resources:

• Online:, click on “Fishing.”