This brochure is designed to provide the public with information and a summary of regulations pertaining to hunting and other recreational use on the Rotenberger 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.
Licenses and permits may be purchased from county tax collectors, license agents, at 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; available where hunting licenses are sold, at most post offices or at www.duckstamp.com.
Quota Permit Information:
General Gun-Vehicle – 0 (no permits issued for 2017-18 season), no-cost, general gun-vehicle track permits with 1 antlered deer tag (no exemptions, non-transferable except that a general gun-vehicle permit and tag shall only be transferred in the field by Commission law enforcement supervisors or their designees when a tracked vehicle becomes inoperable and unable to be repaired while within the wildlife management area to which the tracked vehicle is assigned). Note: This number is the number of quota permits issued during the 17-18 season. The total number of quota permits issued for the 18-19 season may change based on population surveys, water levels, habitat conditions and other variables.
Please contact the South Region Office for rules of inspection and information on registration of track vehicles at 561-625-5122.
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.
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 furbearers, wild hog and crows.
- 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 under 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.
- Fires other than campfires are prohibited.
- An FWC Law Enforcement Officer may search any camp, vehicle or boat, in accordance with law.
- The construction of docks of any type is prohibited.
- Falconers may hunt during the statewide falconry season anytime a management area is open for public access.
- Open to public access year round.
- Persons may only enter and exit the area from the L-4, Powerline, Miami Canal and Manley Ditch levees.
- During the general gun-vehicle season, a general gun-vehicle permit is required to operate a vehicle and the area is closed to all other vehicles and airboats (except airboats used for the purpose of waterfowl and coot hunting).
- During the archery, muzzleloading gun and general gun-walk seasons, airboats are prohibited, except airboats may be used for the purpose of waterfowl and coot hunting on days when waterfowl and coot hunting is allowed.
- The use of all-terrain vehicles is prohibited, except for the purposes of hunting and scouting from 6 a.m. 2 weeks prior to archery season until 6 p.m. 1 day prior to the opening day of general gun-vehicle season. During the archery, muzzleloading gun, and general gun-walk seasons all vehicles except ATVs are prohibited, except on levees designated as open to vehicles.
- While an all-terrain vehicle is in motion, no person shall occupy any platform or structure attached to it. No all-terrain vehicle may be equipped with a steering mechanism that would enable the all-terrain vehicle to be operated from a platform or structure attached to it.
- No person shall operate any all-terrain vehicle, motorized two-wheeled vehicle or motorized three-wheeled vehicle unless it is equipped with an orange rectangular flag at least 10 inches wide and 12 inches long and displayed at a minimum height of 6 feet above the top of the seat.
- Parked vehicles may not obstruct a road, gate or firelane.
- Vehicles are prohibited on tree islands, tree strands or wildlife islands.
- No vessel shall be operated outside of Water Management District canals unless it is equipped with an orange rectangular flag at least 10 inches wide and 12 inches long and displayed at a minimum height of 10 feet above the bottom of the vessel.
- Persons participating in the statewide alligator harvest program may operate airboats and tracked vehicles throughout the area during alligator hunts.
- Tree stands, deer stands and elevated shooting platforms are prohibited except from 6 a.m. 2 weeks prior to the opening of archery season until 6 p.m. the Sunday following the end of general gun-vehicle season. All other 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. 1 day after the end of the season.
- On weekends during the archery, muzzleloading gun, general gun-walk and general gun-vehicle seasons, deer and wild hog may not be quartered, dismembered or removed from the area until checked at the manned check station located at the southeast corner of the Holey Land Wildlife Management Area.
- During the general gun-vehicle season, all deer harvested shall be tagged immediately with the antlered deer tag provided by the Commission.
- Deer may be dismembered in the field or camp, after being checked at a check station on weekends, but each portion shall have a tag affixed to it identifying the name, address and hunting license number of the person who killed it; the date and location at which it was taken; and shall be readily traceable to the portion of the animal bearing the sex identification.
- All boat ramps, parking areas, roads, camping areas, levees, and ajacent powerline pads are closed to hunting.
- The discharge of a firearm outside periods open to hunting or in areas designated as closed due to hunting is prohibited per s.790.15 FS
- Hunting with a gun on, from or across levees is prohibited.
- 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, bows, crossbows or falconry may be used.
- For hunting migratory game, only shotguns, bows, crossbows or falconry may be used. Shotguns shall not be larger than 10 gauge and shall be incapable of holding more than 3 shells in the magazine and chamber combined.
- 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 allowed only during the general gun-vehicle season, except that bird dogs and retrievers may be used for hunting during snipe and waterfowl seasons, and dogs may be used for hunting small game (quail, rabbit, and squirrel) during small game season.
- Dogs used for hunting may be taken onto the WMA after 8 a.m. the day before the opening of a season and shall be removed by 6 p.m. 1 day after the end of the 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.
- Camping is allowed only on the Miami Canal, Manley Ditch and Powerline levees.
- Camps may be set up in the area no earlier than 7 days prior to the archery season and all vehicles, camps, tents and other camping equipment must be removed by 6 p.m. 7 days after the close of general gun-vehicle season. During the remainder of the year, camping is allowed only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and camps may not be left unattended for more than 24 hours.
- Each camper shall assure that his or her campsite is clean at all times.
- The erection of any permanent structure is prohibited.
- Only tents, trailers or self-propelled camping vehicles may be used for camping.
- Deer - Archery, muzzleloading gun and general gun-walk seasons: Season limit 1. General gun-vehicle season: 1 per antlered deer tag.
- Turkey - Prohibited.
- Wild hog - Daily limit 1, annual limit 2. During the general gun-vehicle season, the daily limit is 1 per vehicle.
- Gray squirrel and rabbit - Daily limit 12 per person, possession limit 24 for each.
- Quail – Daily limit 12, possession limit 24.
- Raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk and nutria - No bag limits.
- Bobcat and otter - Possession limit 1 unless in possession of a Trapping License.
- Migratory birds (except mourning and white-winged dove) - See Florida Hunting Regulations handbook.
- Non-native reptiles - No size or bag limit.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Hunting license, management area permit, archery permit and deer permit (if hunting deer).
Legal to Hunt -Deer with at least 1 antler having 2 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) and at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length, wild hog with a shoulder height of 15 inches or more, gray squirrel, rabbit, raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria and non-native reptiles.
Regulations Unique to Archery Season - Hunting with guns or crossbows (except by disabled crossbow permit) is prohibited.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Hunting license, management area permit, muzzleloading gun permit, deer permit (if hunting deer), and migratory bird permit (if hunting migratory birds).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 2 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) and at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length, wild hog with a shoulder height of 15 inches or more, gray squirrel,rabbit, raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria, non-native reptiles and migratory birds in season (except mourning dove and white-winged dove).
Regulations Unique to Muzzleloading Gun Season - Hunting with archery equipment or guns, other than muzzleloading guns, is prohibited, except that centerfire shotguns are allowed for hunting migratory birds.
September 29 through October 14.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Hunting license, management area permit, deer permit (if hunting deer) and migratory bird permit (if hunting migratory birds).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 2 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) and at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length, wild hog with a shoulder height of 15 inches or more, gray squirrel, quail, rabbit, raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria, non-native reptiles and migratory birds in season (except mourning and white-winged dove).
October 20 through November 4.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Quota permit and antlered deer tag, hunting license, management area permit, deer permit (if hunting deer) and migratory bird permit (if hunting migratory birds).
Legal to Hunt - Deer with at least 1 antler having 2 or more points (each point 1-inch or more in length) and at least 1 antler 5 inches or more in length, wild hog with a shoulder height of 15 inches or more, gray squirrel, rabbit, raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria, non-native reptiles and migratory birds in season (except mourning and white-winged dove).
Regulations Unique to General Gun-Vehicle Season -
- Hunting with dogs is allowed.
- All deer taken shall be tagged immediately with the antlered deer tag provided by the Commission.
- The area is closed to walk hunting.
- The area is closed to all vehicles except those authorized by general gun-vehicle permits.
November 5 through March 3.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Hunting license, management area permit, migratory bird permit (if hunting migratory birds), and state waterfowl permit and federal duck stamp (if hunting waterfowl).
Legal to Hunt - Gray squirrel, quail, rabbit, raccoon, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria, non-native reptiles and migratory birds in season (except mourning dove and white-winged dove). Bobcat and otter - December 1 through March 1.
Regulations Unique to Small Game Season -
- Hunting small game (quail, rabbit, and squirrel) with dogs is allowed.
- Hunting with centerfire rifles is prohibited.
- Airboats are allowed.
May be taken year round
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements --no permit or licensing required
Legal to take - Non-native reptiles including Conditional Reptiles such as the Indian python, Burmese python, reticulated python, Northern African/rock python, Southern African python, amethystine python, scrub python, green anaconda and Nile monitor
Regulations unique to removal of non-native reptiles -
- Non-native reptiles may be taken by methods other than guns year round.
- During the open hunting seasons summarized in this brochure, guns (as allowed during each season) may be used to take non-native reptiles, and from March 4 through April 14 guns other than centerfire rifles may be used to take non-native reptiles.
- Conditional Reptiles shall not be removed from the area alive.
- Shooting hours are ½ hour before sunrise until ½ hour after sunset.
- Please report take and sightings of Conditional Reptiles at 888-IVE-GOT1 (888-483-4681) or online at IveGot1.org.
Rail, common moorhen, snipe, ducks, geese, coot and woodcock may be hunted during statewide migratory bird seasons.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Quota permit (if hunting during any quota period), hunting license, management area permit, migratory bird permit, and state waterfowl permit and federal duck stamp (if hunting waterfowl).
Legal to Hunt - See Florida Hunting Regulations handbook, except hunting mourning and white-winged dove is prohibited. Non-native reptiles.
Regulations Unique to Migratory Bird Seasons - All Migratory Bird Regulations shall apply.
- Hunting snipe and waterfowl with bird dogs and retrievers is allowed during snipe and waterfowl seasons.
- The use of airboats for the purpose of waterfowl hunting is allowed when waterfowl are legal to hunt.
- Hunting ducks, geese and coot with lead shot is prohibited.
- Centerfire shotguns are allowed for hunting during established area seasons when 1 or more migratory birds are legal to hunt.
Allowed year round.
Permit, Stamp and License Requirements - Fishing license (not required when frogging).
Legal to Take - See Florida Freshwater Fishing Regulations Summary.
Regulations Unique to Fishing and Frogging - All General Freshwater Fishing Regulations shall apply. Shooting frogs is allowed only during the listed open hunting seasons and only with the legal methods of take during each particular season.
- 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 561-625-5122 (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.
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.