The beautiful and rugged Sonoma coastline, where many abalone divers dive for red abalone

The 2017 abalone diving season on California’s north coast has come to a close. The final day of the season was October 31.

Abalone divers are reminded to turn in their abalone harvest cards, whether they took any abalone or not. Reporting the catch each year helps wildlife biologists and Fish and Wildlife officials manage the fisheries and gauge the health of the abalone population. Harvest data may also be submitted online by clicking here.

A report card for the California recreational red abalone fishery was first established in 2000, requiring pickers to record catch and effort, including date and location of catches. Beginning with the 2002 abalone season, CDFW biologists determined that a combination of returned cards and a random telephone survey would be the best way to estimate catch and effort, given that only a portion of the cards purchased are returned to the CDFW.

In 2015, recreational abalone divers harvested an estimated 155,000 abalone from the Sonoma and Mendocino coastlines. The total abalone catch amounts from 2002-2015 can be found by clicking here.

Questions may be directed to the CADFW, Fort Bragg office that is in charge of abalone reporting at (707) 964-9078.