Waccasassa River
The Waccasassa River near Gulf Hammock Wildlife Management Area

When you count the tropical coral reefs of Florida's Keys, the temperate hardwood forests, the Everglades, the slow-moving rivers that meander for miles and miles, the several hundred freshwater springs and more than 7,700 lakes larger than 20 acres, you can see that Florida has a large inventory of vegetation and wildlife habitats. And while there is a significant number of endangered and threatened species on the Federal and State Endangered and Threatened Species List, the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission is charged with the mission of making sure those lists don't get any longer. To that end, the Commission has a management interest in about 5.8 million acres of public and private lands in Florida, consisting of timber company properties, and land otherwise controlled by the US Fish & Wildlife Service, National Forest Service, Department of Defense, Florida Division of Forestry, Florida Department of Military Affairs, Florida Water Management Districts and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Recreation and Parks.

Officially, the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission oversees 158 Wildlife Management Areas and Wildlife Environmental Areas. Some of these Wildlife Management/Environmental Areas coincide with National Wildlife Refuges, some with Florida State Forests, but most seem to be stand-alone properties where properly-permitted in-season hunting is allowed on commission-controlled lands. The majority of these properties are more rugged than your usual park and they offer significantly fewer amenities.

The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission also manages about 80 freshwater bodies of water scattered through the state. These are all designated Fish Management Areas and are often managed in conjunction with local counties and communities. Community-based fishing lakes and Commission-managed impoundments are typical properties on this list. These bodies of water are often stocked with sunshine bass, largemouth bass and channel catfish. To fish these waters, you'll want to have an up-to-date Florida freshwater fishing license. Many of these lakes also have special bag limits and restrict certain methods of fishing.

Note: PSGHA= Public Small Game Hunting Area

Northwest

Apalachee
Apalachicola
Apalachicola Quail Enhancement Area
Apalachicola Bradwell Unit
Apalachicola Bradwell Unit PSGHA
Apalachicola River
Aucilla
Blackwater
Blackwater Carr Unit
Blackwater Hutton Unit
Box R
Box R PSGHA
Choctawhatchee River
Econfina Creek
Econfina Creek Fitzhugh Carter Area
Escambia River
Eglin AFB
Flint Rock
Joe Budd
L. Kirk Edwards
Lafayette Creek
Ochlockonee River
Perdido River
Pine Log
Point Washington
St. Marks NWR
St. Vincent NWR
Talquin
Tate's Hell
Tate's Hell Womack Creek Unit
Tyndall AFB
Upper Chipola River
Wakulla
Yellow River

North Central

Alligator Lake PSGHA
Andrews
Bayard
Belmore
Big Shoals
Blue Springs
Camp Blanding
Cary
Cedar Key Scrub
Citrus
Cypress Creek
Devils Hammock
Flying Eagle
Four Creeks
Goethe
Grove Park
Gulf Hammock
Hatchet Creek
Hickory Mound
Holton Creek
Homosassa
Jena
Jennings Forest
Little River
Lochloosa
Log Landing
Lower Econfina
Lower Suwanee NWR
Mallory Swamp
Middle Aucilla
Nassau
Osceola
Potash Corp.
Potts
Raiford
Ralph Simmons
Santa Fe Swamp
Snipe Island
Spring Creek
Steinhatchee Springs
Steinhatchee Springs PSGHA
Suwannee Ridge
Thomas Creek
Tide Swamp
Troy Springs
Twin Rivers

Northeast

Baird Unit
Buck Lake
Bull Creek
Caravelle Ranch
Dexter/Mary Farms
Dunns Creek
Emeralda Marsh PSGHA
Etoniah Creek
Fort Drum
Fort McCoy
Gores Landing
Guana River
Half Moon
Jumper Creek
Kilbee Unit
Kissimmee Chain of Lakes
Lake George
Lake Monroe
Lake Panasoffkee
Lake Tracy Unit
Lake Woodruff NWR
Marshall Swamp PSGHA
Matanzas
Merritt Island NWR
Ocala
Ocklawaha Prairie PSGHA
Orange Creek PSGHA
Prairie Lakes PSGHA
Relay
Richloam
Rima Ridge Unit
Rock Springs Run
Ross Prairie
Salt Lake
Seminole State Forest
Seminole Ranch
T.M. Goodwin
Three Lakes
Tiger Bay
Tosohatchee
Triple N
Twelve Mile Swamp
Upper St. Johns River Marsh

Southwest

Arbuckle
Avon Park AFR
Babcock Ranch Preserve
Chassahowitzka
Croom
Green Swamp
Green Swamp West
Hickory Hammock
Hilochee
KICCO
KICCO PSGHA
Kissimmee River
Lake Marion Creek
Myakka State Forest PSGHA
Osprey Unit
Punta Gorda Water Treatment Facility PSGHA
Royce Unit
Royce Unit PSGHA
Upper Hillsborough
Walk-in-the-Water
Webb
Yucca Pens Unit

South

Allapatah Flats
Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee NWR
Big Cypress
C 23-24 Reservoir PSGHA
Corbett
CREW
Dinner Island
Dupuis
Dupuis Dove Field PSGHA
Everglades
Fisheating Creek
Holey Land
Hungryland
Okaloacoochee Slough
Picayune Strand
Rocky Glades PSGHA
Rotenberger
Southern Glades
Spirit-of-the-Wild
STA 1 West PSGHA
STA 3-4 PSGHA
STA 5 PSGHA