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Marine Turtle Permit

The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) issues permits for activities involving marine turtles in Florida under authority granted to the state through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) under Section 6 of the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA).  All activities relating to marine turtles must be authorized under subsection 379.2431 (1), Florida Statutes.  To qualify for a marine turtle permit, the applicant must have the appropriate knowledge and experience, and demonstrate that the proposed activity adds to the conservation of marine turtles.

68E-1 Marine Turtle Permit Rule

Marine Turtle Conservation Handbook

Guiding Principles for Marine Turtle Permit Program

The FWC is the State trustee for marine turtles in Florida. As such it is our responsibility to manage and conserve this public trust resource for current and future generations.

Guiding Principles

Apply or Renew Permits

You may apply for a FWC Marine Turtle Permit online or by submitting an application form via mail, fax, or email. Please see below for details.  

To apply online, visit FWC's online permit system.  If you have not previously used FWC’s online system for a permit (other than hunting/fishing) you will need to select the “Register New User” option.  Otherwise, please use the same User ID and password that you previously registered.

Please contact us to request an application form:

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Imperiled Species Management Section
Tequesta Field Office
19100 SE Federal Highway
Tequesta, Florida 33469

Phone: (561) 882-5975
Fax: (561) 743-6228

F.A.C. Rule 68E-1

Current Marine Turtle Permits expire December 31. In order to process your renewal request and return your new permit to you before the current one expires, we must receive your renewal form (including all applicable reports) by November 30.

Permits may be renewed online using your User ID and password. Renewal requests may also be made by submitting an application form via mail, fax, or email to the addresses listed above.

All activities that you plan to conduct during the next season should be listed on your renewal form. Be sure that all active personnel, with addresses and phone numbers included, are listed on the renewal form. Only listed personnel are authorized to conduct the approved activities. Permit renewals will be delayed if renewal applications are incomplete and/or required reports have not been received.

If you do not plan to renew your permit or if you have any questions regarding your permit renewal, contact FWC Marine Turtle Permitting Staff at (561) 882-5975 or

Permit holders who conducted nesting surveys should receive nesting summary forms from the St. Petersburg office. If you conducted a survey but did not receive those forms, please contact Dr. Simona Ceriani or Beth Mongiovi at (727) 896-8626.

Permit holders authorized to hold turtles for any purpose (research, education, rehabilitation, etc.) are required to submit an annual (calendar year) report that includes: the SID number, tag numbers (if tagged), species, sex (if known), acquisition date, purpose of acquisition, disposition date, and measurements at disposition. All quarterly holding facility reports are due no later than January 15. The annual report is due no later than January 31.

Permit holders authorized to conduct research projects and/or monitoring for construction projects must submit an annual summary of activities for each approved project with the renewal form. All information for beach nourishment projects must be submitted in accordance with the Beach Nourishment Monitoring Table provided with your permit.

All new research activities or modifications, including tagging programs, require a detailed proposal. The proposal must be specific and must include the following sections:

  1. Title of the project.
  2. Name of the principal investigator(s) and his/her qualifications and experience relative to the proposed research. Also include a list of relevant research experience for all personnel involved with the project, and a list of publications and grants pertinent to the specific project.
  3. Identify whether the proposal is submitted as undergraduate thesis work, graduate thesis work, or other.
  4. The date of the application.
  5. Purpose/Justification - Identify how the proposed research will contribute to the recovery of sea turtle species in Florida, identifying specific tasks listed in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Recovery plans where possible. Recovery plans can be accessed on the Web at
  6. Objectives - Provide a short summary of the project, including an identification of the species involved, a brief overview of the methods to be utilized including the experimental design and statistics, and specific objectives or questions related to the Sea Turtle Recovery tasks to be answered by the proposed research.
  7. Methodology - Provide a detailed description of the experimental methods, including number of replicates, experimental design, methods for capturing, handling, tagging, and/or holding sea turtles. This section must also include the maximum number and species of animals needed and their expected fate.
  8. Justification for proposed methodology - Present possible alternative methodologies and explain justification for proposed methodology.
  9. Time frame for the study.
  10. Study site(s) - Identify the specific areas where the proposed work will be accomplished.
  11. Literature citations.
  12. If the requested research is not associated with a specific permit, the PI must also complete and submit a Marine Turtle Permit Application.

Please submit your research proposal to or the Tequesta Field Office, 19100 SE Federal Highway, Tequesta, FL 33469. 

Need a form?

Find all forms located in the Marine Turtle Conservation Handbook 2016.