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Outdoors

  • FWC wants to hear from you on bear management

    If you want to get a word in edgewise on how black bears are managed in Florida, you will have two oppotunities — onday, March 23, and Thursday, March 26, during webinares held at 6 p.m. on each date. You do not have to be computer savvy to participate. 

    The state’s largest land mammal has come back from just several hundred bears in the 1970s to more than 3,000 today. And there have been sightings of bears in Levy County's wooded areas and hammocks. 

  • FWC: Don't feed the alligators

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has a publication available on its website, “A Guide to Living with Alligators,” that warns the public of the dangers involved in feeding alligators.

    It's against the law. And violators can be cited and spend time in court or pay a fine.

    The brochure , by Jamie Feddersen and Tim Donovan, both of the FWC, advises swimmers to not swim outside of posted swimming areas or in waters that may be inhabited by alligators.

    Feddersen and Donovan write in the brochure:

  • Teen injured by jumping sturgeon

    A 14-year-old Fanning Springs girl was hit and injured by a jumping sturgeon on the Suwannee River this past Sunday.

    Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers reported Heavyn Nash was riding with her mother and grandfather when a 4-to-6 foot sturgeon leapt out of the water and into the boat hitting her and knocking her unconscious, said an FWC press release. The collision occurred just south of Manatee Springs near Usher Landing.

    Nash was taken to Manatee Springs and from there transported to the hospital where she was treated and released.

  • Boaters reminded to be safe during scallop season

     The Coast Guard, along with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is emphasizing boating safety at the start of this year’s bay scallop season from June 27 - Sept. 24..

    The Coast Guard is expecting to see an increase in the amount of boaters on the water for this year’s season and strongly encourage boaters to put safety at the forefront for this bay scallop season.

  • Two Indians sign with major universities

    Two of Chiefland Middle High School's brightest stars will be blazing out of town at the end of the year, thanks to athletic scholarships.

    "It doesn't happen, especially at a school as small as we are," CMHS Athletic Director and Coach Aaron Richardson said about the football scholarships given to players Willie Brannon and Austin Vincent. "Today is a culmination of many years of hard work and perseverance."

    The two signed letters of intent Wednesday.

  • Cuddle time

    Manatee deaths appear to be down last year compared to the record numbers reported by state officials in 2013.

    As of December, 2014, 368 manatee deaths were reported for the year by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation. One-hundred-twenty-five of those deaths were labeled as undetermined. Manatee infant deaths accounted for 99 mortalities. Sixty-seven were the result of collisions with watercraft. Twenty-six were attributed to natural causes and 24 died due to cold stress.

  • FWC bear workshop in Chiefland Dec. 4

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will hold three public workshops in December to discuss management of black bears in the Big Bend area of Florida and how people can get involved in working with the FWC on local bear issues.
    The third and final workshop will be held in Chiefland, Dec. 4, at the Tommy Usher Community Center, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The first two will be held in Homosassa and Dade City.

  • New manatee decals available

    Staff report
    Manatee decals for 2014 -2015 are now available at tax collector's offices, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
    The decals, which cost $5, are given to boat and vehicle registrants who voluntarily contribute to the campaign. A portion of the money goes toward the Save the Manatee Trust Fund, which is put toward education, research and facilities used in manatee recovery when the animals are injured or sick.

  • Water district profiling Manatee Springs

    Manatee Springs is being highlighted in a new feature on a state website.
    The Suwannee Rive Water Management District created the feature, the Manatee Springs Dashboard, several months ago as an experimental means of getting feedback from people on the spring and the issues surrounding its health.
    "For a variety of reasons, it's an important spring," said SRWMD Director of Water Resources Erich Marzolf, adding that the district has included the feature based on what some of the state's other water management districts are now doing.

  • 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).