Coastal Conservation Association Florida, the Duke Energy Mariculture Center and the FWC Continue Redfish Restocking Efforts Along West Coast

Apr 24, 2024 8:40 AM ET
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(Coastal Conservation Association Florida issued the following news release.)

  • The partners will release 50 slot-sized redfish in Bay County to support stock enhancement and kick off the 2024 Redfish Film Fest

PANAMA CITY, Fla., April 25, 2024 /3BL/ - Coastal Conservation Association Florida (CCA Florida), the state’s leading organization dedicated to marine fisheries conservation, education and advocacy, will join the Duke Energy Mariculture Center and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to kick off the 2024 Redfish Film Fest and release 50 hatchery-reared, adult redfish (averaging 18 to 27 inches in length) off the waters of Bay County on Thursday, in effort to combat the decreasing population along Florida’s West Coast.

In recent years, the redfish population has drastically declined as a result of water quality issues and loss of habitat. To counteract these effects, CCA Florida and its partners have taken a proactive approach to habitat restoration, water quality initiatives, fisheries management and restocking efforts for one of Florida’s most sought-after inshore fish, the redfish.

“Every redfish released brings us another step closer to repopulating one of Florida’s most iconic fisheries,” CCA Florida Executive Director Brian Gorski said. “Together with our dedicated partners, we are proud to continue conserving and protecting Florida’s marine resources along the West Coast and help launch this year’s Redfish Film Fest.”

The latest restocking efforts for the nonprofit-corporate partnership are part of a multifunctional and multiyear strategy to rebuild and maintain game fish stocks, and releasing adult, slot-sized redfish makes a quicker impact to the fishery as it significantly increases the chances for spawning.

“Duke Energy Florida has a long-standing relationship with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and CCA Florida. Together we’re making a powerful impact protecting the state’s natural resources,” said Melissa Seixas, Duke Energy Florida state president. “We understand that environmental stewardship is vital to the success of local economies and critical to the communities we serve.”

In the past five years with support from FWC, CCA Florida and Duke Energy have released nearly 450,000 redfish and spotted seatrout (4 to 30 inches) along Florida’s East and West Coasts to help provide abundant recreational fishing opportunities.

"We are proud to support the collaborative restocking efforts of our valued partners, CCA Florida and Duke Energy," said FWC Executive Director Roger Young. "Ensuring the sustainability of our redfish population is crucial for conserving this important species and allowing us to continue to enjoy Florida's resources."

The release is scheduled for Thursday, April 11 at 12 p.m. at Destination Panama City, 101 West Beach Drive, Panama City, FL 32401. Together, the partners will release about 50 slot-sized redfish from the Duke Energy Mariculture Center. FWC Executive Director Roger Young, FWC Chief Conservation Officer George Warthen along with state and local government officials are scheduled to attend.

About CCA Florida

The Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) was founded in 1977 after drastic commercial overfishing along the Texas coast decimated redfish and speckled trout populations. One of 19 state chapters, CCA Florida became the fifth state chapter in 1985. A 501(c)3 non-profit, the purpose of CCA is to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. Through habitat restoration projects, water quality initiatives and fisheries advocacy, CCA Florida works with its over 18,000 members including recreational anglers and outdoor enthusiasts to conserve and enhance marine resources and coastal environments. Join the conversation on Facebook or learn more at

About Duke Energy

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of America’s largest energy holding companies. The company’s electric utilities serve 8.4 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 54,800 megawatts of energy capacity. Its natural gas unit serves 1.7 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky.

About FWC

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s mission is to conserve fish and wildlife resources for their long-term well-being and the benefit of people. Florida’s fish and wildlife belong to the people of Florida, and the FWC is entrusted to take care of these precious resources. The FWC protects and manages more than 575 species of wildlife, over 200 native species of freshwater fish and more than 500 native species of saltwater fish while balancing these species' needs with the needs of approximately 19 million residents and the millions of visitors who share the land and water with Florida's wildlife. Learn more at

Media contact: Audrey Stasko 
Media line: 800.559.3853 
Twitter: @DE_AudreyS

CCA Florida Contact: Mary Hillyer Peelen Walther 
Phone: 407.617.0604 

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