Lobster tales: thrill of the hunt 

If you can't stand the site of those Yankee Maine lobsters killing time in a cramped holding tank, claws rubber-banded, waiting for the boil pot, there is a more sporting method of scoring the taste of the tender water "bugs": Go native and bag your own Florida spiny lobsters in their ocean habitat.

Like clockwork, hunting season officially opens Aug. 6 and continues through March 31. In addition to a thirst for adventure, all that's needed is scuba gear, proper licensing and bountiful waters.

Square the legal stuff at the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (888-347-4356; or
). Then learn the rules at

Next up is planning a suitable trip, from a travel-agent-styled pampered outing on a dive boat that handles all the messy stuff, to a down-and-dirty DIY camp-out.

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