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FWC’s Hunting Hot Sheet

The latest hunting and conservation news and events from the
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).

Welcome to autumn!

Welcome to autumn

This time of year holds so much promise! Hunting seasons give us the chance to shut out the stress of daily life and instead witness a sunrise, feel a soft breeze and listen to the sounds of nature. You may know people who don't hunt but are interested in finding out what makes hunting such a special experience. We've assembled the following events and resources with the hope you'll share them with interested friends, family, coworkers and neighbors. They may not become lifelong hunters, but those who learn more about hunting and the connection to conservation may become lifelong advocates. 

Deer hunting 101 workshop

Deer Hunting 101

Do you know a college-aged friend or family member who is interested in learning more about hunting? Encourage them to register for the FWC’s free deer hunting 101 workshop, held Oct. 15 at the Austin Cary Forest Campus in Gainesville. Participants can learn about hunters’ role in conservation, gear and strategies, safety, wild game processing and cooking and get hands-on opportunities at the archery range. At the end of the workshop, students can be considered to take part in hunts offered Sunday, Nov. 13 and Sunday, Dec. 4. Those who are interested should register now before this deer hunting 101 workshop fills up. 

Shooters World hosting hunter safety field days

Get hunter safety certified before upcoming general gun seasons in Zones B and C by completing an FWC-approved online hunter safety course and then attending a free in-person hunter safety field day at Shooters World in Orlando, The Villages and Tampa. The first step is to find and complete an online hunter safety course. Then register for one of the following in-person field days at Shooters World.

Shooters World - Orlando (Orange County)

  • Thursday, Oct. 20 – 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 21 – 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 22 – 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 23 – Noon to 6 p.m.
  • Register for a field day

Shooters World - The Villages (Sumter County)

  • Thursday, Oct. 20 – 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 21 – 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 22 – 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 23 – Noon to 6 p.m.
  • Register for a field day

Shooters World - Tampa (Hillsborough County)

Before you attend one of these in-person field days, please review and acknowledge this information from Shooters World.

Hunter safety courses are designed to help students become safe, responsible and knowledgeable hunters and learn about conservation. Anyone born on or after June 1, 1975, must pass an approved hunter safety course and have a hunting license to hunt alone (unsupervised).

Women's shooting sports seminar

Women's shooting sports event

The FWC is hosting a hunting and shooting sports seminar Oct. 8-9 at the Ocala Conservation Center, primarily for women as well as anyone 18 or older who is a beginner and wants to learn. Attendees will gain experience in shooting sports disciplines, hunting strategies, and Florida game wildlife. If you know someone who would enjoy this, encourage them to submit their application.

This program is being offered through our Outdoor Weekend Learning Seminars (O.W.L.S.), which provide hands-on opportunities for women, youth and families to learn the skills and knowledge needed to safely and responsibly enjoy fishing, paddling, camping, shooting sports, and other outdoor activities. Find upcoming seminars across the state at

First Shots class at Palm Beach County Shooting Sports Complex

First Shots Seminar

The Palm Beach County Shooting Sports Complex is hosting monthly First Shots seminars to introduce new shooters to safe. responsible firearms handling, rules and regulations, and recreational shooting sports opportunities. Participants will also receive hands-on training at the range from range safety experts. The first seminar will be held Saturday, Oct. 15 from 9 a.m. to noon.  Those interested in attending must provide their own firearm, ear/eye protection, ammunition and targets. The fee for this seminar is $30 and includes one additional visit to the range after the training.

The FWC manages 11 ranges across the state. Depending on the facility, they offer rifle/handgun ranges, sporting clays courses, 5-stand or trap and skeet fields, and archery ranges. Find an FWC-managed range.

Youth Hunting Program

Youth Hunting Program logo

The FWC offers mentored hunts for youth who are interested but may not have the chance to experience hunting. Our Youth Hunting Program is designed to teach young people between the ages of 12 and 17 about conservation and safe, responsible hunting. To participate, youth must complete a hunter safety course and be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. Find and register for fall youth hunts.

Get started hunting

Watch the world wake up

One of the reasons people are drawn to hunting is the chance to connect with nature and enjoy the many pleasures of a Florida morning - hearing the predawn chorus of insects and birds. And watching the sunrise paint the sky. If you’re interested in experiencing hunting, learn more and check out a new video that captures the essence of watching the world wake up!

Commission Meeting Scheduled for Sept. 27-28

Commission meeting in Miami graphic

The FWC’s next commission meeting is scheduled for Sept. 28-29 in Miami. The meeting begins at 8:30 (ET) each morning and is open to the public. If you can’t attend in person, you can follow @MyFWC on Twitter, sign up for news updates at and watch it on The Florida Channel.

Black-crowned night heron photo courtesy of Jack Butcher

Share your thoughts about proposed hunting rule amendments for 2023-24


We are at the early stages of developing rules for the 2023-24 hunting season. Proposed rule amendments include establishing open seasons for two new wildlife management areas: Garcon Point, a 3,245-acre WMA in Santa Rosa County and Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge WMA, Okeechobee Unit, a new 1,865-acre WMA in Okeechobee County. 

An essential part of this effort is seeking your input on these and other proposed rule amendments related to hunting and FWC-managed lands. Please take a few minutes to view proposed rule changes and provide your input. FWC staff will present its annual package of proposed hunting related rule amendments to Commissioners at their Nov. 30 to Dec. 1 meeting.

Upcoming Seasons

Note: the following season dates do not apply to wildlife management areas. Find more information about 2022-2023 hunting season dates and bag limits. Plus, learn about logging and reporting harvested deer and wild turkey and other deer season rules.

Zone A

Antlered Deer 

  • General Gun season (first phase) runs through Oct. 16

Zone B

Antlered Deer

  • Archery season: Oct. 15 – Nov. 13
  • Crossbow season: Oct. 15 – Nov. 18

Antlerless Deer 

  • Archery season: Oct. 15 – Nov. 13
  • Crossbow season: Oct. 15 – Nov. 13

Zone C

Antlered Deer 

  • Archery season runs Oct. 16
  • Crossbow season runs through Oct. 21
  • Muzzleloading gun season: Oct. 22 – Nov. 4
  • Youth deer hunt weekend: Oct. 29–30

Antlerless Deer 

  • Archery season runs through Oct. 16
  • Crossbow season runs through Oct. 16
  • Muzzleloading gun season: DMU C5: Oct. 22–23
  • Youth deer hunt weekend: Oct. 29–30

Zone D

Antlered Deer 

  • Archery season: Oct. 22 – Nov. 23
  • Crossbow season (first phase): Oct. 22 – Nov. 23

Antlerless Deer 

  • Archery season: Oct. 22 – Nov. 23
  • Crossbow season: Oct. 22 – Nov. 23

Gray Squirrel

Statewide Oct. 8 – March 5

2021-2022 Florida migratory game bird hunting season dates 

Note: The following dates may not apply to wildlife management areas. Visit our migratory bird hunting seasons dates webpage for more information.

  • Teal only season runs through Sept. 25
  • Canada goose (first phase) runs through Sept. 25
  • Dove (first phase): Sept. 24 – Oct. 16
  • Rail (king, clapper, sora and Virginia) runs through Nov. 9
  • Common gallinule (moorhen) runs through Nov. 9

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