One man’s catch from Puget Sound prompts restrictions on octopus hunting

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SEATTLE – One man’s catch out of the Puget Sound leads to octopus hunting restrictions.

On Friday, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission decided to ban giant Pacific octopus hunting across seven different sites in the Puget Sound.

“I had no education I didn’t know,” said scuba diver Dylan Mayer.

Last October Dylan Mayer was all smiles after harvesting a giant octopus. The picture went viral then sparked outrage.

“I’ve been getting lots and lots of death threats people have been looking up my address from my license plate,” said Mayer.

Although Mayer didn’t break any rules the 20 year-old learned the hard way that legal doesn’t always mean something is socially acceptable. The beauty below is the draw for most divers exploring Puget Sound.

“This is a diving habitat this is for the pleasure of people,” said diver Ben Bouchard.

octopuscatchBouchard says octopus or any other wildlife should be off the hook but good luck telling that to fisherman John Werzynski.

“I don’t think they should ban it at all,” said Werzynski.

Werzynski says since octopus is not endangered there should be no bans just limits on how many one person can grab.

“I think it’s an overreaction,” said Werzynski.

On Saturday Mayer met Q13 Fox News at the same spot in West Seattle where the controversy all started. His outlook on his love for hunting has since changed.

“I agree with the ban, social awareness is number one, people need to know that it is socially unacceptable to hunt where people like to look at animals,” said Mayer.

Seacrest Park Cove 2 near Alki Point is where Mayer caught the octopus. It is one of the seven locations included in the ban.

The following locations are now prohibited:

Seacrest Park Coves 1 and 3 near Alki Point and the Alki Beach Junk Yard in West Seattle.

Three Tree Point in Burien.

Redondo Beach in Des Moines.

The Days Island Wall and one area next Les Davis Fishing Pier in Tacoma.

Deception Pass near Oak Harbor.

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