Lobster Fishing, San Diego, Ca.

Catching lobster is easier than you may believe. Living in San Diego there are a number of simple ways you can catch a lobster for dinner and maybe even make a couple bucks. I will list a variety of ways you can eat like a king, impress your girlfriends or just have something to do.

1. First, be sure you have a fishing and lobster license. You can pick one up for fairly cheap either for a day or for year. However if fishing off the piers you may not need a fishing license at all and you can check around for free fishing days.  However new regulations says that even those who are not required to have a fishing license must purchase a lobster card to catch lobster even off a pier.  I left a link in the comments below.

2. Get a trap. Hoop nets work pretty well. They are cheap, effective, easy to handle and much more convenient than crab cages or others. For more information and quick link to hoop nets found on Amazon visit Lobster.
Traps, however may not be necessary living in San Diego. Shucks, if you are brave all you need is a pair of gloves. Stick you hand in the water near the rocks and grab one. It’s true, you can pluck one right off shore.

3. If you have a net and do not have a license you can drop you trap off a pier.

For more information on:

Where to get a fishing license
Tips on catching lobster
Cheap hoop nets on Amazon.com

11 responses to “Lobster Fishing, San Diego, Ca.

  1. Actually it is illegal to lobster off the pier without a license since the opening of lobster season 2008. You have to have a fishing license AND a lobster report card to catch lobster anywhere in California. It sucks they make you buy 2 report cards per year cuz it expires Jan1st but the season isn’t over till March…. Where is it that you have gotten lobster off the rocks on shore? I am too chicken to get in the water, I have pulled too many crazy things out of there over the years.

  2. Why go to all the trouble when San Diego Lobster is like a giant prawn compared to fresh, live Maine Lobster? There are a few seafood restaurants in San Diego that do lobster right (don’t even say Red Lobster). My favorite is San Diego Lobster in North Park- they even deliver!

  3. Well let’s see hmmm because a fresh lobster goes from the ocean directly to the boiling pot or grill or however you chose to cook it. It cost less, it’s more fun etc.

    Main Lobster is good eatin’ but cali spiny lobsters that are as fresh as they can get taste just as sweet.😀

  4. I live in OC and thinking about going down to San Diego this coming season for some lobster fishing at the pier. I am very new to this, do you have any recommandation for pier locations? Thank you!!

    • I would suggest Shelter Island. It’s not a piece (really) but they have a good fishing dock but mostly it’s because they have jetties so you can set your traps off the rocks.

  5. Im new to lobstering and my daughther gave me a lobster ring and netting for my birthday. Ive been waiting for 6 months to use it. do I need a license to go lobstering off a pier? say like ocean beach pier or imperial beach pier?

  6. Hi, first time reader, first time blogger. Lobster report card required for everyone, where ever you fish for lobster in California. 2 net max for pier per person, 7 per boat, and lobster cages/pots are illegal. Lobster easy to catch, just get the smelliest, and bloodest fish out there. Drop your trap, 20 minutes pull it up. Nothing in the net, move on. Chances their are no lobsters in the area.


  7. Correction to Lincoln’s post: 7 lobster per person limit / 10 max hoop nets per boat. Make sure if you are doing this by either boat or from the jetty that you use proper illumination on the top buoy to ensure other’s in the water don’t run over the rope line and get it tangled in the prop.

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