Florida Hunting News

Florida WC Shares Black Bear Conservation Success, Solicits Feedback on New Bear Management Plan

After dwindling to as few as 300 bears in the 1970s, the Florida black bear population has rebounded to an estimated 3,000 bears today. Bears and their cubs roam forests and swamps from Eglin Air Force Base in the Panhandle to Ocala National Forest in the state's midsection and Big Cypress National Preserve in Southwest Florida.

Give Thanks for Hunting Opportunities in Florida

November means the 2011-12 huntin' season's in full swing. In this month's column, I cover most everything you need to know about general gun, fall turkey, quail and gray squirrel, snipe and the second phase of mourning and white-winged dove seasons.

The first thing you need to do is pick up a $17 Florida resident hunting license. Nonresidents pay $46.50 for a 10-day license or $151.50 for 12 months.

Macclenny, Florida Cake-stealing Bear Euthanized

The birthday-cake-stealing bear that broke into a Macclenny home Oct. 3 has been euthanized, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).

After tracking the bear for approximately two weeks, FWC biologists were able to pinpoint the bear's location using telemetry equipment. Because the area was so dense with underbrush, the safest course of action was determined to be the use of dogs to track the bear, and then personnel would tranquilize the animal.

Florida WC Launches New Technology for Wildlife Alert

The Wildlife Alert Reward Program has helped the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) catch thousands of violators through phone calls and online submissions from the public. Now, it is employing an additional method: text messaging.

Florida WC, Ducks Unlimited Offer Free Duck Hunting Workshop in Palm Bay

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Ducks Unlimited are holding a free waterfowl hunting workshop on Saturday, Nov. 12, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. in Palm Bay to help open up the world of duck hunting to newcomers to the state, or anyone else interested in the sport.

Florida FWC to Baker Co. Residents: Be 'Bear Aware’

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has received reports about a black bear in the Macclenny area, west of Jacksonville, this week.

"The bear apparently broke into a home at 2 a.m. Monday and grabbed food items, including a birthday cake," said Karen Parker, FWC public information coordinator.

An FWC biologist went to the scene Tuesday to assess the situation.

Florida's Huntin’ Season is Crankin’ Up!

Football season is in full swing, and the 2011-12 hunting season is cranking up. Heck, in Zone A, they're already into general gun season. But for the rest of us, I'd like to cover the rules and regulations regarding two hunting seasons that are just around the corner: muzzleloading gun and the first phase of dove.

Immediately following the close of crossbow season in each zone, the muzzleloading gun season begins. Season dates run Nov. 19 - Dec. 2 in Zone B, Oct. 22 - Nov. 4 in Zone C and Dec. 3-9 in Zone D.

Nuisance Alligator Trapper Needed for Putnam Co., Florida

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's (FWC) Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program is accepting applications for a contracted nuisance alligator trapper in Putnam County.

Applicants must be residents of Putnam County and have a clean criminal history, including no fish or wildlife law violations. Preference will be given to those who live west of County Road 315. 

Free Hunter Safety Internet-completion Course in Calhoun Co., Florida

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is offering a free hunter safety Internet-completion course in Calhoun County.

The course will be at the Calhoun County Sheriff's Office, 20776 Central Ave. East, Blountstown, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. (CDT) Oct. 8.

To gain admittance, students must complete the Internet course before coming to class and bring a copy of the final report from the online portion of the course. The final report form does not have to be notarized.

Florida Gulf Hammock Man Injured in Crossbow Hunting Accident

A Gulf Hammock man was injured Sunday evening while he was hunting in a private hunt club in Levy County.

John C. Champion (DOB 09/25/89) was hunting from his Polaris Ranger in the Fiber Factory Hunt Club, according to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) investigators.

Champion, who is a paraplegic, was hunting alone around 6 p.m. and was attempting to cock his crossbow. He accidently fired the bolt through his left foot, pinning his foot to the floor of the Ranger, investigators said.