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Outdoors

  • Gulf anglers could be entitled to $585 million

    By Brad Buck

    bradbuck@ufl.edu

    Recreational anglers who normally fish in the Gulf lost up to $585 million from lost fishing opportunities in the year of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and could be entitled to compensation, according to a new University of Florida study.

    After a disaster such as an oil spill, trustees – which could include federal, state or tribal authorities – often attempt to secure financial compensation from those responsible.

  • FWC sets quota, special-opportunity permits

    The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has released the following Quota and Special-Opportunity Permits for North Central Region.

    The number of permits shall not be exceeded, except to accommodate a group application and then may only be exceeded by up to four permits.

    North Central Region

    Andrews, archery (each hunt) - 45 by quota application (no exemptions).

  • FWC wants to hear from you on deer hunting

    If you hunt in Hunting zones B or C, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission want to hear from you. 

  • Free fishing reef workshop Saturday

    Horseshoe Beach Artificial Reef Developer Charlie Fornaciari, Project Manager for Dixie County, is hosting a free workshop on the new fishing reefs.  This workshop will consist of a short film, locations of new reefs, and projected reefs.  He will then answer any and all questions, give handouts and provide GPS coordinates.  

    This workshop will be on Saturday, Aug. 16, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at The Marina in Horseshoe Beach.  

    Come early and learn a lot.  Call 352-498-5405 for more info.

  • TrophyCatch launches new, enhanced website wesitetete ded anglers

    In preparation for season three of TrophyCatch, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) launched a new and highly improved website to facilitate gathering data on Florida’s famed trophy largemouth bass and to reward anglers for releasing them alive.

    TrophyCatch is an incentive-based conservation program designed for anglers who catch-and-release largemouth bass heavier than 8 pounds in Florida. There are three different tiers and two bonus categories offering the opportunity to win prizes:

  • Be a hero: help rescue manatees, sea turtles

    “Be a Hero!” by getting decals that help with the research, rescue, rehabilitation and management of Florida’s endangered manatees and sea turtles.

    People can receive a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) manatee or sea turtle decal, and show their support for saving these iconic Florida species, with a donation of $5.

    Rescues of manatees and sea turtles that are injured, ill or otherwise in distress are one of the many FWC conservation activities supported by decal donations.

  • Tentative dove hunting dates announced

    The FWC anticipates the 2014-15 hunting season dates for mourning and white-winged doves to be:

    First phase: Sept. 27 - Oct. 27

    Second phase: Nov. 8 - Dec.1

    Third phase: Dec.12 - Jan.15, 2015

    (Note: The official dates will be posted by mid-August when they are released by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service).

    Shooting Hours:

    First phase - noon to sunset

    Second & third phases - ½-hour before sunrise to sunset

    Bag limit (daily/possession): 15/45

    Read more at

  • Tentative waterfowl hunting dates announced

    The FWC announced that it anticipates the 2014-15 waterfowl season dates to be:

    • Early Canada Goose: Sept. 6-24

    • September teal and wood duck: Sept. 20-24

    • September teal only: Sept. 25-28

    • Regular Season (ducks, coots, and light geese): Nov. 22 - Nov. 30 and Dec. 6 - Jan. 25, 2015

    • Regular Season (Canada Goose): Nov. 22 - Jan. 30, 2015

    • Youth duck and goose: Jan. 31 - Feb. 1, 2015

  • Officials: Cedar Key safe from red tide

    A red tide bloom in the Gulf has killed thousands of fish in the last two weeks, according to state officials, but Cedar Key is proving unaffected.

    Leslie Sturmer, a University of Florida aquaculture specialist in Cedar Key, said Monday that test samples for red tide toxins in the area's shellfish have yielded good results.

    "There are zero cells in the samples, as we suspected," she said, adding that 5,000 or more cells per liter in a sample would cause shellfish operations to close shop.

  • 2 teens arrested for torturing tortoise

    Officers with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) arrested two Clay County teenagers July 25 on charges of torturing a gopher tortoise.

    Danielle Susan Dionne, 15, and Jennifer Emoke Greene, 18, have been arrested on charges of felony cruelty to animals, a third-degree felony, and taking, harassing, harming or killing a gopher tortoise, a second-degree misdemeanor.