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Lake George - Dexter/Mary Farms Unit

Dexter Mary Farms

Managed in cooperation with the Florida Forest Service.

The Dexter Mary Farms Unit of Lake George Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is in northwest Volusia County. The St. Johns River borders 3.5 miles of this more than 14,000-acre forest. Hit hard by the wildfires of 1998, about half of the forest is under restoration. Bluffton Recreation Area is located on the St. Johns River and offers fishing, picnicking, and a ¾-mile interpretive nature trail for hiking, bird watching and wildlife viewing. Although there is no boat ramp on the area, canoes, kayaks, and small boats may be launched from the bank. Fishing is also available at Jenkins Pond. This area is part of an extensive wildlife corridor that provides habitat vital to the survival of the black bear. Over half of the forest is in natural slash pine, with some pasture, hardwood hammocks, cypress swamps, and wetlands. The Lake George WMA Dexter/Mary Farms Unit is part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail. Migrating songbirds are abundant in hardwood hammocks each fall and spring. Throughout the year, swallow-tailed kites, limpkins and wading birds are seen along the river.

Recreation opportunities include hunting and primitive camping. Hikers, bicyclists and equestrians are welcome on roads, designated trails, and permanent fire lines. Children under the age of 16 are required to wear a helmet when horseback riding on public lands.  For more detailed information go to Nicole's Law. All horseback riders must have proof of current negative Coggins Test results for their horses when on state lands. Also see the Lake George WMA website.

Rules Regarding Dogs

  • For purposes other than hunting, dogs are allowed, but must be kept under physical restraint at all times.
  • Hunting dogs 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. one day after the end of the season. Hunting with dogs is prohibited, except bird dogs and dogs with a shoulder height of 15 inches or less may be used during small game season.  Dogs on leashes may be used for trailing wounded game.
  • Dogs are prohibited in areas posted as "Closed to Public Access" by FWC administrative action. 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.

More Information

  • View FWC's regulations summary brochure for Dexter/Mary Farms Unit Lake George for an area map, hunting seasons, permits, fees and area regulations.