DeSantis touts historic environmental funding in Florida Keys visit

Governor Ron DeSantis arrived in the Florida Keys touting what he said is historic funding for the environment. He also threw in an extra day for the popular mini lobster season. 

The extra day will be on Sunday, July 14, and the mini-season will continue on July 24 and 25.

DeSantis also announced $5 million will go towards artificial reefs. He said since he's been governor, the state has spent more than $114 million on coral reefs with many stressed by warm water in the keys, but DeSantis said, vital to preserve.

READ: Chile's Humboldt penguin could be facing extinction, experts warn

"It helps protect against storms, and of course it does. It attracts visitors and tourists year-round," said the governor.

DeSantis said there's plenty of Red Snapper in the Gulf of Mexico for the state's 103-day season, but among several swipes at the Biden administration, DeSantis questioned federal rules on snapper in the Atlantic.

"How many days is the Federal season on Atlantic Snapper? One day? Maybe two?" he asked. "They’re using faulty data. There's far more fish in the sea than what they're saying."

But, DeSantis said there are still too many Lionfish. More than a million of the non-native and destructive fish have been taken over the years in the annual Lionfish Challenge, sponsored by the state. 

This year’s challenge is underway now through September 2. There are prizes for numbers of Lionfish caught. For more information on the Lionfish Challenge, visit


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