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Furbearer Trapping Regulations

Only general wildlife management area (WMA) regulations are covered in this booklet. For specific WMA regulations, obtain individual WMA brochures published annually for each area. WMA brochures are available at, FWC regional offices (see FMC Regional Offices) and some county tax collectors’ offices.

Furbearer trapping regulations

  • Bobcat and otter may be trapped statewide Dec. 1 – March 1. No limits.
  • Raccoon, opossum, coyote, beaver, skunk and nutria may be trapped statewide year round. No limits.
  • Minks, Everglades minks, weasels and round-tailed muskrats cannot be taken or possessed.

License requirements

A trapping license ($26.50) is required:

  • When taking or attempting to take furbearing animals using live traps or snares.
  • To sell the pelts or meat of furbearing animals to licensed fur dealers, whether taken by trap, snare or gun.

Methods of take

Furbearers may be taken with guns, live traps, snares (including power snares) and recorded game calls. Live traps and snares must be checked every 24 hours.


The use of steel leg-hold traps, dog-proof raccoon traps and body-grip (conibear) traps is prohibited, except when permitted by FWC. It is illegal to transport wild-trapped raccoons within, into or from the state, except by FWC permit or authorization.

Closed season on fox

Trapping or shooting foxes is prohibited, but foxes may be chased with dogs year round. Foxes or untanned fox pelts may not be possessed, except by permit from FWC. A permit

is not required when getting a road-killed fox mounted by a taxidermist.

Commercial furbearer requirements

One must possess a fur dealer’s license ($100.00) to buy or sell meat or fur from furbearing mammals for commercial purposes, or to solicit business by mail or advertising.

CITES tag requirements

Bobcat and otter pelts taken for commercial purposes must be tagged with a CITES tag. Licensed fur dealers and their agents must tag otter and bobcat pelts immediately upon receipt. CITES tags are also required when transporting pelts of bobcat or otter across state lines. The possession of pelts of bobcat and otter is prohibited during the period of April 1 to Nov. 30 unless pelts have been tagged. Tags are distributed to trappers and dealers upon request. To obtain CITES tags, call FWC at 850-488-5878. Fur dealers are held accountable for disposition of tags and are required to return unused tags by April 15, 2016.


Wildlife management area regulations can differ.

Season dates

  • Gray squirrels and quail may be taken statewide by permitted falconers Oct. 1, 2015 – March 31, 2016.
  • Rabbits may be taken year-round.

Daily bag and possession limits


Daily bag limit

Possession limit




Gray squirrel






Migratory game bird seasons were not established at the time this booklet went to press. For season dates, contact FWC at 850-488-5878.

Carry Bear Spray

Florida black bears normally avoid people but . . .

  • If you do come across a bear, back away slowly, raise your arms and speak calmly.
  • If the bear approaches you, hold your ground, wave your arms and make loud noises.
  • If the bear does not run from you, use your bear spray. Aim low and be aware of wind direction.


REMEMBER: No deterrent is 100 percent effective. It’s best to practice proper bear avoidance and safety. Carefully read all the instructions on your can of bear spray and know how to use it.

Help Us Protect the Florida Panther!

Florida is the only state in the eastern United States that has an existing population of panthers. Many of the known remaining panthers reside on WMAs and other lands open to hunting. Special care and vigilance on the part of hunters is necessary to protect this rare and magnificent animal.

Killing free-roaming panthers in Florida is a felony punishable by imprisonment of up to five years and/or a $5,000 fine.

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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