FWC adds youth turkey hunts, modifies hog-dog hunts on public lands
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Media contact: Tony Young, 850-488-7867
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) passed
new rules that affect hunting on many of the state's wildlife
management areas. Most of these new rules apply to specific
WMAs; however, two of them affect public hunting on a more
One such statewide rule establishes youth turkey
hunts on 78 FWC-managed areas, all of which support adequate turkey
populations, and creates a youth turkey quota permit. Forty-nine of
the 78 areas will require a youth turkey quota permit, and only
those youths who will be less than 16 years old on the last day of
the youth turkey hunt may apply for this opportunity.
The youth turkey hunts on these WMAs will be
two-day, Saturday-Sunday hunts and will occur the weekend prior to
the opening of spring turkey season on each particular WMA,
beginning with the 2012 season.
"We know the importance of exposing young people to
hunting opportunities," said FWC Chairman Rodney Barreto. "The more
our youth experience wildlife and nature, the more likely they are
to grow up to appreciate these resources and to pass along outdoor
traditions to future generations."
These hunts will be available for youths younger
than 16 years old who are supervised by and in the presence of an
adult, 18 years of age or older, but only the youth will be allowed
to harvest a turkey.
Adult supervisors who don't have the required
hunting license, turkey permit and management area permit won't be
allowed to participate in the hunt. They will be allowed to
supervise only. However, adult supervisors who do have the
required license and permits will be allowed to "call" and
otherwise participate in the hunt. But only the youths are
allowed to harvest a turkey.
The other statewide rule removes the one-gun
restriction on all hog quota hunts using dogs. Currently,
these "hog-dog" quota hunts allow only one hunter (permit-holder),
one gun, one assistant and up to three dogs. An additional
person also may join the hunting party, if a guest permit is
obtained in that person's name.
But starting with the 2011-12 hunting season, each
participant will be allowed to hunt with a gun.
Details about these new rules
are available online at MyFWC.com/Commission, linked from the Feb.
23-24 meeting agenda.