Florida agency considers extending alligator hunting hours

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission directed staff to advertise a rule amendment to extend alligator hunting hours. Commissioners will vote on it at their June meeting.

The FWC gave preliminary approval for an additional four hours of daylight-hunting to the state’s recreational alligator hunting season, which runs Aug. 15 to Nov. 1 each year.

Currently, the rule primarily allows for only nighttime-hunting of alligators, between one hour before sunset and one hour after sunrise.  The change would extend alligator hunting hours, establishing the legal hours from 5 p.m. until 10 a.m. during the annual 11-week season.

In developing the recommendation, FWC staff weighed biological considerations, people’s desire for additional daylight opportunities to hunt alligators, the concerns expressed about potential conflicts between alligator hunters and other users of lakes and rivers, and the unique and diverse views citizens have about alligators and their management in Florida.

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