Apply for spring turkey quota hunts, get ready for Zone C general gun season and more

Hunting Hot Sheet masthead

November 2022

FWC’s Hunting Hot Sheet

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

Check the open/closed status of WMAs

Work at wildlife management areas impacted by Hurricane Ian has been ongoing and many areas have reopened. However, some WMAs are still heavily impacted by flooding and the recovery process may take time. So for the rest of the 2022-23 hunting season, we encourage you to frequently check to ensure you have the latest update about WMAs (or roads within WMAs) that are closed or reopening. As WMAs reopen, they are removed from the closure listing.

Apply for spring turkey limited entry/quota permits

Spring turkey hunting

Now is the time to plan for public hunting opportunities for the 2023 spring wild turkey season. The phase I application period starts Nov. 1 and runs through Nov. 30, 2022, for:

Apply at

Zone C deer season opens Nov. 5

White-tailed deer

On Saturday, Nov. 5, Florida’s Zone C general gun deer season opens on lands outside of the wildlife management area system. Zone C is Florida’s largest hunting zone, encompassing the central and northern part of the state. The general gun season in this zone runs through Jan. 22, 2023, giving hunters ample opportunity to escape the demands of everyday life, connect to the outdoors and possibly enjoy healthy and delicious venison.

Plan ahead for your hunt by brushing up on Zone C antler point regulations and deciding how you’ll log and report your harvested deer or wild turkey. Find more resources at

Photo by Eric Orlando

Win prizes by entering the CWD Monitoring Sweepstakes

CWD Monitoring Sweepstakes prizes

By donating the head of a white-tailed deer harvested from Taylor, Dixie, Lafayette, Gilchrist, DeSoto, Lee, Hendry and Collier counties to be tested for chronic wasting disease, you could win one of five prize packages. Each prize package is valued at $1,000 and contains a cooler, trail camera, binoculars and a game processing knife kit. If you’re donating antlered deer, you may remove and keep the skull cap and antlers. Learn more and find donation locations.

Private Lands Antlerless Deer Permit Program tagging requirements

Antlerless white-tailed deer

A reminder for those hunting on private lands enrolled in the FWC’s Antlerless Deer Permit Program: if you harvest antlerless deer, they must be tagged with an antlerless deer tag before moving it from the point of harvest. This requirement applies even if harvested on a day when the take of antlerless deer is otherwise allowed within the zone the enrolled lands are in (e.g., archery season). While antlerless deer taken under the Antlerless Deer Permit Program are excluded from annual statewide bag, daily bag and possession limits, hunters are required to log and report their harvest. Learn more about the Antlerless Deer Permit Program.

Photo by Rogue Eye Photography

Upcoming youth hunting opportunities

Youth waterfowl hunting day

Youth Waterfowl Hunting Day

The first of two youth waterfowl hunting days is Saturday, Nov. 12 (the second one is Feb. 11, 2023). These opportunities allow youth 15 years old and younger to hunt ducks, light geese, Canada geese, mergansers, coots and common gallinules (moorhens) while supervised by a nonhunting adult. During Youth Waterfowl Hunting Days, participants may hunt on private property with landowner permission and on most waterbodies that have public access (public boating landing/launch). Some public waterbodies might be closed or have restrictions, so check with local law enforcement agencies or FWC regional offices prior to hunting on public waterbodies. 

The FWC also has youth hunt events at T.M. Goodwin Public Small Game Hunting Area, Stormwater Treatment Area 1 West (STA-1W) and Guana River - Lake Ponte Vedra Public Small Game Hunting Area. These fun, family-oriented events include raffles, free food and great waterfowl hunting. For more information on the Guana River hunt, call 904-825-6877. For more information on the T.M. Goodwin and STA-1W hunts, call 321-726-2862. 

Learn more about Youth Waterfowl Hunting Days.

Youth Deer Hunt Weekends

Youth Deer Hunt Weekends

Zone B’s Youth Deer Hunt Weekend falls on the Thanksgiving holiday weekend (Nov. 26-27) and Zone D's Youth Deer Hunt Weekend is Dec. 3-4. Youth Deer Hunt Weekends allow an adult to take someone who is 15 years old and younger deer hunting on lands outside of the wildlife management area system. Youth participating in this hunt are allowed to harvest one antlered or antlerless deer during the weekend and the deer counts toward the youth’s statewide annual bag limit. Youth may use any legal method of take for deer. 

The FWC hosts four Youth Deer Hunt Weekends each year and they coincide with each zone’s muzzleloading gun season. These hunts are not available on WMAs (the FWC has been hosting youth and family deer hunts on WMAs for years). Find more information about Youth Deer Hunt Weekends.

Meet our volunteer hunter safety instructor of the year

Volunteer hunter safety instructor of the year

Ronald Mohler of Auburndale recently received FWC’s prestigious Victor Heller Volunteer Hunter Safety Instructor of the Year award for 2021. A Polk County instructor since 2018, his hands-on approach to field days, a requirement for students who have completed an FWC-approved online course, teaches students about safe, responsible hunting. He also teaches hunter safety courses for Boy Scouts of America, 4-H and other youth groups. When he’s not teaching, Ron also volunteers for other programs including National Archery in the Schools Program, Youth Hunter Education Challenge and learning events at the FWC’s Tenoroc Public Shooting Range. The FWC sends its heartiest congratulations and thanks to this dedicated volunteer!

If you have the heart of a volunteer and a passion for sharing our outdoor traditions, learn how you can make a positive impact by becoming a volunteer hunter safety instructor.

Share your thoughts about proposed hunting rules for 2023-24

If you haven't given us your feedback on the proposed rule changes for 2023-24 hunting seasons and FWC-managed lands, please do so now. It's easy to view the proposed rule changes and provide your input

Thanksgiving: a cornucopia of hunting opportunities


Thanksgiving is the holiday of plenty and for many that means a dinner plate piled high with cornbread dressing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, ham and turkey. In Florida, plenty also describes the range of hunting opportunities you can enjoy throughout the holiday weekend. Enjoy time afield with someone special by taking part in the following hunting seasons, which are open on lands outside of the wildlife management area system.

Zone A

  • General gun: Nov. 19 - Jan. 1

Zone B

  • Muzzleloading gun: Nov. 19 - Dec. 2

Zone C

  • General gun: Nov. 5 – Jan. 22

Zone D

  • Archery season runs through Nov. 23
  • Crossbow: First phase runs through Nov. 23. Second phase: Nov. 28 - Dec. 2
  • General gun: First Phase runs Nov. 24 - 27. Second phase: Dec. 10 - Feb. 19

Gray squirrel season runs statewide through March 5

Quail season runs statewide Nov. 12 - March 5

Find a summary of 2022-2023 hunting season dates and bag limits

Migratory bird season dates

The following seasons and dates may not apply to wildlife management areas.

  • Duck: Nov. 19 - 27 and Dec. 10 - Jan. 29
  • Dove: Nov. 12 - Dec. 4 and Dec. 19 - Jan. 31
  • Coot: Nov. 19 - 27 and Dec. 10 - Jan. 29
  • Canada goose: Nov. 19 - 27 and Dec. 1 - Jan.  30
  • Light Geese (Snow, blue and Ross’): Nov. 19 - 27 and Dec. 10 - Jan. 29
  • Merganser (Common, red-breasted, hooded): Nov. 19 - 27 and Dec. 10 - Jan. 29
  • Snipe season runs Nov. 1 -  Feb. 15

Find a summary of 2022-2023 Florida migratory game bird hunting season dates

Returned permits

Returned, reissued permits

If you’re interested in hunting a wildlife management area that requires a quota permit but you didn’t apply or weren’t drawn, you may want to check into returned permits. These are permits that hunters return because they can’t use them. They are included in weekly reissue drawings throughout the season. Log into your account at to view permit availability and apply.

Learn more about returning unused permits and how to apply for them.

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