Rock Springs Run
This brochure is designed to provide the public with information and a summary of regulations pertaining to hunting and other recreational use on the Rock Springs Run Wildlife Management Area. 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, the Florida Hunting Regulations handbook and quota permit worksheets should provide the information necessary for you to plan your hunting activities. These publications are available at MyFWC.com.
Persons using wildlife management areas are required to have appropriate licenses, permits and stamps. The following persons are exempt from all license and permit requirements (except for quota permits when listed as “no exemptions,” recreational use permits, antlerless deer permits and the Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp [federal duck stamp]): 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, for one year.
Licenses and permits may be purchased from county tax collectors, license agents, by telephone at 888-486-8356 or through the Commission's Recreational License Issuance Services (RLIS). 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 Permit Information:
Archery - 125, no-cost, quota permits (no exemptions) for each of 2 hunts.
Muzzleloading Gun - 125, no-cost, quota permits (no exemptions) for each of 2 hunts.
General Gun - 125, no-cost, quota permits (no exemptions) for each of 2 hunts.
Small Game - 50, no-cost, daily quota permits (no exemptions) are available first-come, first-served at the check station each day of the season.
Permit applications: Hunters must submit electronic applications for quota and special-opportunity permits through 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 beginning April 1; please refer to the hunting handbook or MyFWC.com for specific dates. Worksheets will be available about 2 weeks prior to each application period.
Guest hunters: For each non-transferable archery, muzzleloading gun, general gun, wild hog, spring turkey and mobility-impaired quota permit issued through RLIS, a quota permit holder (host) may take a guest hunter by obtaining a guest permit. A guest hunter must possess a completed guest permit while hunting except the following persons may be a guest hunter without a guest permit: a youth under 16 years of age, a youth supervisor, a mentor license holder or a mentor license supervisor. A host may only bring 1 guest hunter at a time and may only use 1 guest permit per day. The following persons are not considered to be guest hunters: other quota permit holders, non-hunters and exempt hunters (on areas and during seasons that allow exemptions). The host must share the bag limit with the guest hunter and the host is responsible for violations that exceed the bag limit. The guest hunter and host must enter and exit the area together and must share a street-legal vehicle while hunting on the area. The guest hunter may hunt only while the host is on the area. Refer to the quota hunt worksheets for additional information.
Youth and mentor license holders: A supervisor is required to accompany a youth or mentor license holder during any hunt. A youth hunter (less than 16 years of age) must be supervised by a person at least 18 years of age. A mentor license holder must be supervised by a licensed hunter at least 21 years of age. Unless exempt, only those supervisors with proper licenses and permits may hunt. If the supervisor is hunting during any hunt (not including special-opportunity) for which quota permits are issued, at least 1 person in the party must be in possession of a quota permit.
Transfer of permits: Quota and guest permits are not transferable; antlerless deer permits are transferable. A positive form of identification is required when using a non-transferable permit, except for a youth under 16 years of age. The sale or purchase of any quota permit, guest permit or antlerless deer permit is prohibited.
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:
- Any person hunting deer or accompanying another person hunting deer shall wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent-orange material as an outer garment, above the waistline. These provisions are not required when hunting with a bow and arrow during archery season.
- Taking of spotted fawn or swimming deer is prohibited.
- It is illegal to hunt over bait or place any bait or other food for wildlife on this area.
- Driving a metal object into any tree, or hunting from a tree into which a metal object has been driven, is prohibited.
- No person shall cut, damage or remove any natural, man-made or cultural resource without written authorization of the landowner or primary land manager.
- 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. Recorded calls and sounds can be used to hunt wild hog.
- The wanton and willful waste of wildlife is prohibited.
- Hunting, fishing or trapping is prohibited on any portion of the area posted as closed to those activities.
- People, dogs, vehicles and other recreational equipment are prohibited in areas posted as “Closed to Public Access” by FWC administrative action.
- 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.
- Most game may be hunted from ½ hour before sunrise until ½ hour after sunset (see exceptions for each season).
- The release of any animal is prohibited, except by permit from FWC or written authorization from the landowner or primary land manager.
- The head and evidence of sex may not be removed from the carcass of any deer on the area.
- The planting or introduction of any non-native plant is prohibited, without written authorization of the landowner or primary land manager.
- Wild hog may not be transported alive.
- A hunting license is not required to hunt wild hog.
- Littering is prohibited.
- It is unlawful to set fire to any forest, grass or woodlands.
- An FWC Law Enforcement Officer may search any camp, vehicle or boat, in accordance with law.
- Falconers may hunt during the statewide falconry season anytime a management area is open for public access. Falconers are not exempt from quota permits during hunts requiring them.
- Open to public access year round. Vehicles are allowed on Old 433 only from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. and during established check station hours during hunting seasons. Vehicles are allowed on all other named or numbered roads, but only one day prior to and during hunting seasons. Outside of established area hunting seasons and scout days, a fee of $3/vehicle is charged; for more information, call the park staff at 407-884-2009 or visit FloridaStateParks.org/park/Rock-Springs-Run and select the “Hours and Fees” link on the right side of the page.
- Vehicles may only be parked at designated parking areas.
- Parked vehicles may not obstruct a road, gate or firelane.
- Airboats, all-terrain vehicles, tracked vehicles and unlicensed and unregistered motorcycles are prohibited.
- Horses are prohibited during archery, muzzleloading gun and general gun seasons.
- No motor vehicle shall be operated in areas designated as closed to vehicular traffic.
- Outside of hunting seasons, public access is regulated by the Department of Environmental Protection: 407-884-2009.
- Hunting equipment may not be taken onto the WMA until after 8 a.m. the day before the opening of a season and shall be removed by 6 p.m. one day after the end of the season.
- Hunters shall enter and exit the area at designated entrances.
- Hunters must check in at the check station upon entering and check out upon leaving the area and check all game harvested.
- If hunting on the West BMK portion of the area, hunters must obtain a daily vehicle pass (issued from the check station) in addition to their quota permit and shall enter and exit the area at the designated entrance on Old McDonald Road.
- No deer shall be dismembered until checked at the check station.
- Check station hours are 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. during Daylight Savings Time; 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. during Eastern Standard Time and 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. during small game season.
- The discharge of a firearm outside of periods open to hunting or in areas closed to hunting is prohibited per s. 790.15 FS.
- Hunting at night with a gun is prohibited.
- Muzzleloading guns used for taking deer must be .40 caliber or larger if firing a single bullet, or be 20 gauge or larger if firing 2 or more balls.
- Hunting deer with rimfire or non-expanding, full metal jacket (military ball) ammunition is prohibited.
- Hunting wildlife (other than migratory birds) with air guns is allowed. See Florida Hunting Regulations handbook for details on hunting with air guns.
- Hunting deer with air guns is prohibited except pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) air guns propelling a bolt, arrow, or bullet .30 caliber or larger are allowed.
- Children under the age of 16 hunting with a firearm or air gun must be in the presence of a supervising adult.
- No person shall discharge a firearm or have a loaded firearm in hand while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- For hunting non-migratory game, only shotguns, rifles, pistols, air guns, bows, crossbows or falconry may be used.
- Hunting with full automatic firearms, centerfire semi-automatic rifles having a magazine capable of holding more than 5 rounds, explosive or drug-injecting devices and set guns is prohibited.
- Hunting with dogs is prohibited except dogs may be used for hunting small game (quail, rabbit, squirrel and migratory birds) during the small game season.
- No person shall allow any dog to pursue or molest any wildlife during any period in which the taking of wildlife by the use of dogs is prohibited.
- Dogs on leashes may be used for trailing wounded game.
- For purposes other than hunting, dogs are allowed, but must be kept under physical restraint at all times.
A guest hunter must share the host’s bag limit, except bag limits specified as per person. No person shall exceed statewide bag limits.
- Deer - During the archery season, 1 antlered and 1 antlerless deer per quota permit. During the muzzleloading gun and general gun seasons, 1 antlered deer per quota permit and 1 antlerless deer by antlerless deer permit only.
- Wild hog - No size or bag limit.
- Gray squirrel and rabbit - Daily limit 12 per person, possession limit 24 for each.
- Quail – Daily limit 12, possession limit 24.
- Coyote - No bag limit.
September 28-30 and October 5-7.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Quota permit, daily permit (if hunting the West BMK portion), hunting license, management area permit, archery permit and deer permit (if hunting deer).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 3 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) OR a main beam length of 10 inches or more, antlerless deer (which includes does and bucks with antlers less than 5 inches in length, but not spotted fawn), wild hog and coyote.
Regulations Unique to Archery Season -
- Youth less than 16 years of age may harvest antlered deer with at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length.
- Hunting with guns or crossbows (except by disabled crossbow permit) is prohibited.
October 20-22 and 26-28.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Quota permit, daily permit (if hunting the West BMK portion), hunting license, management area permit, muzzleloading gun permit and deer permit (if hunting deer).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 3 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) OR a main beam length of 10 inches or more, antlerless deer by antlerless deer permit only (each antlerless deer permit allows the take of only 1 doe or 1 buck with antlers less than 5 inches in length, but not spotted fawn), wild hog and coyote.
Regulations Unique to Muzzleloading Gun Season -
- Youth less than 16 years of age may harvest antlered deer with at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length.
- Hunting with archery equipment or guns, other than muzzleloading guns, is prohibited.
November 9-11 and 16-18.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Quota permit, daily permit (if hunting the West BMK portion),hunting license, management area permit and deer permit (if hunting deer).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 3 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) OR a main beam length of 10 inches or more, antlerless deer by antlerless deer permit only (each antlerless deer permit allows the take of only 1 doe or 1 buck with antlers less than 5 inches in length, but not spotted fawn), wild hog, and coyote.
Regulations Unique to General Gun Season - Youth less than 16 years of age may harvest antlered deer with at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length.
December 1-2, 8-9 and January 5-6.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Daily quota permit, daily permit (if hunting the West BMK portion), hunting license and management area permit.
Legal to Hunt - Wild hog, coyote, gray squirrel, quail and rabbit.
Regulations Unique to Small Game Season - Hunting with centerfire rifles is prohibited.
There are no fishing or frogging opportunities on this wildlife management area.
- Information for persons with disabilities can be found at MyFWC.com/ADA.
- If you have any questions about this material, please call the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 352-732-1225 (TDD 800-955-8771).
- The FWC is not responsible for protection of personal property and will not be liable for theft of or damage to personal property.
- Please report the location of any sick or extremely skinny deer to the Chronic Wasting Disease hotline, toll free at 866-293-9282.
Department of Environmental Protection Rules:
- For information regarding all recreational use other than hunting, please contact the Department of Environmental Protection at 407-884-2009.
- Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
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.