Guana River - Lake Ponte Vedra PSGHA

Important: Update about WMA regulations brochures

Regulations Summary and Area Map
July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018

Brochure Adobe PDF | Map Only Adobe PDF

This brochure is designed to provide the public with information and a summary of regulations pertaining to hunting and other recreational use on the Guana River – Lake Ponte Vedra Public Small Game Hunting Area (PSGHA). Regulations that are new or differ substantially from last year are shown in bold print. Area users should familiarize themselves with all regulations. For exact wording of the wildlife laws and regulations, see the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s wildlife code, on file with the Secretary of State and state libraries. This brochure, quota application worksheets and the Florida Hunting Regulations handbook should provide the information necessary for you to plan your hunting activities. These publications are available from any Commission office, county tax collector and at MyFWC.com.

Persons using PSGHAs are required to have appropriate licenses, permits and stamps. The following persons are exempt from all license and permit requirements (except for the Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp [federal duck stamp] or Guana River Waterfowl Permit): Florida residents who are 65 years of age or older; residents who possess a Florida Resident Disabled Person Hunting and Fishing Certificate; residents in the U.S. Armed Forces, not stationed in Florida, while home on leave for 30 days or less, upon submission of orders; and children under 16 years of age. Children under 16 years of age are exempt from the federal duck stamp. Anyone born on or after June 1, 1975 and 16 years of age or older must have passed a Commission-approved hunter-safety course prior to being issued a hunting license, except the Hunter Safety Mentoring exemption allows anyone to purchase a hunting license and hunt under the supervision of a licensed hunter, 21 years of age or older.

Licenses and permits may be purchased from county tax collectors, license agents, at MyFWC.com/license or by telephone at 888-486-8356. A no-cost Migratory Bird Permit is available when purchasing a hunting license. Any waterfowl hunter 16 years of age or older must possess a federal duck stamp.

 

Quota Information:

Waterfowl – 40, no-cost, nontransferable quota permits (no exemptions) for each of 27 hunts and 1 youth hunt. A maximum of three hunters shall be allowed per permit. The hunt party shall not exceed three persons, except during youth waterfowl hunts when a youth hunter must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, per F.S. 790.22.

Permit applications: Hunters must submit electronic applications for quota permits through the Commission’s Recreational License Issuance Services (RLIS). Worksheets listing hunts, application periods, deadlines and instructions are available at county tax collector’s offices, FWC offices or MyFWC.com. Quota application periods occur throughout the year; please refer to the hunting handbook or MyFWC.com for specific dates. Worksheets will be available about 2 weeks prior to each application period. Hunters are limited to 1 permit per hunt. No more than 5 Guana River – Lake Ponte Vedra waterfowl quota permits can be acquired per person per permit type. Up to 3 hunters may hunt per permit. Permits are valid only for the date listed on the permit.

 

General Area Regulations:

All general laws and regulations relating to wildlife and fish shall apply unless specifically exempted for this area. Hunting or the taking of wildlife or fish on this area shall be allowed only during the open seasons and in accordance with the following regulations:

  1. It is illegal to hunt over bait or place any bait or any other food for wildlife on this area.
  2. No person shall cut, damage or remove any natural, man-made or cultural resource without written authorization of the landowner or primary land manager.
  3. Taking or attempting to take any game with the aid of live decoys, recorded game calls or sounds, set guns, artificial light, net, trap, snare, drug or poison is prohibited.
  4. The wanton and willful waste of wildlife is prohibited.
  5. Hunting, fishing or trapping is prohibited on any portion of the area posted as closed to those activities.
  6. Public access is prohibited on any portion of the area posted as “Closed” or “Restricted.”
  7. Taking or herding wildlife from any motorized vehicle, aircraft or boat which is under power is prohibited, until power and movement from that power, has ceased.
  8. The release of any animal is prohibited, without written authorization of the landowner or primary land manager.
  9. The planting or introduction of any non-native plant is prohibited, without written authorization of the landowner or primary land manager.
  10. Construction or use of permanent blinds or structures is prohibited.
  11. All materials used for temporary blinds and spent shell casings must be removed after each hunt.
  12. Littering is prohibited.
  13. Tampering with or destruction of equipment (including signs), improvements, and water control structures is prohibited.
  14. Fires are prohibited.
  15. A Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Law Enforcement Officer may search any vehicle or boat, in accordance with law. 

Public Access, Vehicles and Vessels:

  1. Lake Ponte Vedra is open for recreational use from Guana dam to a line two miles north of the dam (See map) at all times, and on the remainder of Lake Ponte Vedra from February 10 through November 10.
  2. Persons accessing, parking or launching boats at the Guana Dam are required to pay an access fee to the Department of Environmental Protection.
  3. Public access to the Guana Dam Water Control Structure or any portion of it is prohibited.
  4. For additional information for the upland portion of the Guana River WMA please see the Guana River WMA regulations at MyFWC.com.
  5. Only one vehicle per permit may access the area on scheduled hunt dates, except during youth waterfowl hunts when up to two vehicles per permit may access the area.
  6. No motor vehicle shall be operated in areas designated as closed to vehicular traffic.
  7. Vehicles may be parked only in designated parking areas (see map). Parking along A1A is prohibited.
  8. Parked vehicles may not obstruct a road, gate or boat ramp area.
  9. Use of boats is prohibited except on scout days and by hunters in possession of a Guana River WMA Waterfowl Permit on established waterfowl hunt days.
  10. Vessels with internal combustion engines larger than 10 h.p. are prohibited on Lake Ponte Vedra, except alligator hunt participants may use airboats and outboard motors larger than 10 h.p. when hunting alligators.
  11. The use of boats within 50 yards of the Guana Dam water control structure is prohibited.
  12. Use of airboats, all-terrain vehicles, tracked vehicles or unlicensed and unregistered motorcycles is prohibited.
  13. This brochure does not contain information about alligator hunting. To find out more about alligator hunting, please visit MyFWC.com.

 Hunters and Check Stations:

  1. Please report leg bands at reportband.gov.
  2. Lake Ponte Vedra will be open for scouting from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Nov. 17 and Dec. 08.
  3. Permitted hunters and guests shall enter and exit Six Mile Landing in 1 vehicle.
  4. Quota permit holders shall check in at the check station when entering the area and shall declare their hunting guests to the check station operator at that time.
  5. Once checked in, permitted hunters and their guests may launch at Six Mile Landing, Guana Dam, or private property. Permitted hunters wishing to launch at Six Mile Landing shall form a single file line from the ramp to A1A.
  6. During the waterfowl hunts, the Six Mile Landing Check Station hours are 4 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  7. All hunters must check out and check all game harvested prior to 1 p.m.
  8. That portion of Lake Ponte Vedra from the Guana Dam to a point ½ mile north is closed to hunting except for alligator hunting.
  9. Hunting at the wildlife observation towers or nature trail boardwalks is prohibited.
  10. Hunting is prohibited in areas posted as “Closed to Hunting.”

Guns:

  1. The discharge of a firearm outside of periods open to hunting or in areas closed to hunting is prohibited per s. 790.15 F.S.
  2. Hunting at night with a gun is prohibited.
  3. The take of wildlife with guns other than shotguns is prohibited.
  4. Shotguns used for taking wildlife shall not be larger than 10 gauge and shall be incapable of holding more than 3 shells in magazine and chamber combined.
  5. Children under the age of 16 hunting with a firearm must be in the presence of a supervising adult.
  6. No person shall discharge a firearm or have a loaded firearm in hand while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  7. Non-toxic shot approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must be used when hunting on this area.

Dogs:

  1. Only waterfowl retrievers and bird dogs may be used for hunting.
  2. When hunters are at the check station, their dogs must be left restrained at the hunter’s vehicle.
  3. For purposes other than hunting, dogs are allowed, but must be kept under physical restraint.

 Camping:

Prohibited.                    

Trapping:

Prohibited.

Waterfowl Season:

September wood duck and teal season: Sept. 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20.
September teal season: Sept. 21, 22, 23 and 24.
Duck, light goose and coot season: Nov. 18, 22 and 25; Dec. 9, 13, 16, 20, 23, 27 and 30; January 3, 6, 10, 13, 17, 20, 24 and 27.
Youth hunt: February 3.

Permit, Stamp and License Requirements – Quota permit, hunting license, management area permit, migratory bird permit, state waterfowl permit and federal duck stamp.     

Legal to Take – Wood duck and teal during September season; teal during the teal only September season; duck, geese and coot during regular duck season and the youth hunt. Consult our Waterfowl page or the Florida Hunting Regulations handbook for detailed information for the September duck seasons and for duck, light goose and coot season.

Regulations Unique to Waterfowl Season:

  1. Hunting ducks, geese and coot with lead shot is prohibited.
  2.  Legal shooting hours for ducks, geese and coot are ½ hour before sunrise until noon.
  3. Waterfowl hunting from permanent blinds or structures is prohibited.

 Fishing and Frogging:

Allowed year round on Lake Ponte Vedra, but only from the Guana Dam to a line 2 miles north of the dam, and on the remainder of Lake Ponte Vedra only from February 10 through November 10.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Fishing license (not required when frogging).
Legal to Take - See Florida Freshwater and/or Saltwater Fishing Regulations Summaries.

Regulations Unique to Fishing and Frogging - All General Freshwater Fishing Regulations and General Saltwater Regulations shall apply.

  1. Fish may be taken with hook and line only.
  2. Fishing with more than 3 poles or 3 rods and reels is prohibited.
  3. The possession or use of gill nets, trawls, seines, gigs or spearguns is prohibited in Lake Ponte Vedra, except that gigs may be used to harvest frogs.
  4. The use of cast nets or gigs within 50 yards of the water control structure located on the Guana Dam is prohibited.
  5. Shooting frogs is allowed during waterfowl season.

General Information:

  1. Information for persons with disabilities can be found at MyFWC.com/ADA.
  2. If you have any questions about this material, please call the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 352-732-1225 (TDD 800-955-8771).
  3. The FWC is not responsible for protection of personal property and will not be liable for theft of or damage to personal property.

Cooperation Requested:

If you see law violators or suspicious activities, contact your nearest Commission regional office or call 888-404-FWCC.  You may qualify for a cash reward from the Wildlife Alert Reward Association.

The U.S. Department of the Interior prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex or disability.  If you believe that you have been discriminated against in any program, activity or facility as described above, or if you desire further information please write to: The Office for Human Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C. 20240.  The project described in this publication is part of a program funded by federal dollars under the Wildlife Restoration Act.  Federal funds pay 20 percent of the cost of the program.

 



FWC Facts:
The FWC has teamed with other conservation organizations to offer youth hunts that are safe, educational and very affordable.

Learn More at AskFWC