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Florida Message from the FWC

Message from the FWC by Chairman Rodney Barreto

Hunter-funded research paves way to a healthy future for Florida’s game species

Having up-to-date knowledge about Florida’s game species is important for good conservation and the future of hunting, which is why we’re excited about the many research projects underway this year throughout the state. With current research spanning topics such as deer population dynamics, wood duck nesting success, snipe genetics, wild turkey ecology and more, there’s something of interest for all of Florida’s hunters.

We’re especially pleased about a new project focusing on gobbling and nesting chronology of wild turkeys in south Florida. This project is a three-year study that began this past winter, at the Okaloacoochee Slough Wildlife Management Area in Hendry County and DeLuca Preserve in Osceola County. The objectives of this research project are to determine the relationship between gobbling, nesting and hunting season dates to ensure Florida’s spring turkey hunting season is set to maximize hunter satisfaction and the sustainability of Florida’s wild turkey population.

Wild turkeys trapped at the two study sites will allow biologists to gather basic information (weight, size, age, sex, etc.) about each bird. In addition, they’ll band all captured birds and outfit a select number of hens with GPS transmitters. Biologists will regularly monitor hens that received GPS transmitters to determine nesting behavior including when and how many nests are initiated and the success of the nesting effort.

This research project is the result of a partnership between the FWC and the University of Florida D.E.E.R. Lab. It is funded by money generated from the sale of turkey permits, as well as contributions from the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida and the Florida State Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation.

We invite you to learn more about wild turkey management at MyFWC.com/Turkey.

Florida Message from the FWC

Florida Message from the FWC

Recognition Programs for Trophy Game in Florida

Florida Buck Registry

The Florida Buck Registry is a program designed to honor hunters who harvest exceptional deer within the state. To be eligible for recognition:

  • Typical antlered deer must meet a minimum Boone and Crockett score of 100 points.
  • Nontypical antlered deer require a score of at least 125 points.

For additional information on the registry and entry specifics, visit the official FWC page dedicated to deer at MyFWC.com/Deer.

Florida Wild Turkey Registry

The Florida Wild Turkey Registry exists to commemorate the harvest of outstanding wild turkeys by hunters in Florida. There are two specific certificates awarded:

  • The Outstanding Gobbler Certificate is issued for a turkey with a beard measuring 11 inches or more in length and both spurs reaching a length of 1¼ inches or longer.
  • The First Gobbler Certificate is granted to hunters aged 15 or younger on the occasion of harvesting their first gobbler, with no requirements for beard and spur measurements.

Hunters looking to apply or seeking more information about the wild turkey registry can find the application and guidelines at MyFWC.com/Turkey.

These registries not only recognize the achievements of hunters but also promote ethical hunting practices and the pursuit of game management objectives. The acknowledgment of significant game harvests inspires dedication among hunters to the principles of wildlife conservation and selective hunting strategies.

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Disclaimer:

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