Lake Panasoffkee Wildlife Management Area

Managed in cooperation with
Southwest Florida Water Management District


photo of creek on Lake Panasoffkee WMA
Southwest Florida
Water Management District

Lake Panasoffkee WMA lies along the eastern shore of Lake Panasoffkee, in north central Sumter County. This nearly 9,000-acre area was acquired between 1990 and 1997 to preserve the lake and its associated floodplain forests. Four spring-fed creeks enter the lake. Pinelands and oak scrub are found at higher elevations. Wild turkey, wild hogs, white-tailed deer, armadillo, hawks, turtles, and wading birds are common residents. Lake Panasoffkee WMA is part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail. On the loop trail through the open pasture kestrels, meadowlarks, and killdeer may be observed. The spur to Little Jones Creek is a good spot to hear and observe warblers. Over eight miles of shared trails are available for bicycling, and 18 more miles of trails are open for horseback riding and hiking. Check the regulations summary for equestrian access during seasonal hunts. Children under the age of 16 are required to wear a helmet when horseback riding on public lands.  All horseback riders must have proof of current negative Coggins Test results for their horses when on state lands. Visitors can picnic in the open pavilion. Lake Panasoffkee offers separate primitive equestrian and group campsites. A free reservation is required. Fishing, boating, and paddling are available on the lake, which is accessible from a nearby county boat ramp. Hunting may be enjoyed seasonally. 

FWC Facts:
A 2011 survey showed that 49 percent of residents and 47 percent of tourists participate in wildlife-viewing trips in Florida.

Learn More at AskFWC