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Florida Fishing and Hunting License

Florida is home to more than 5 million acres of the largest wildlife management area in the country. If you plan to fish or hunt in the State of Florida you must have a license and the state makes it easy.

Shortcut: Florida Fishing  

If you love the great outdoors, Florida offers thousands of lakes, rivers, and coast lines along with forests and preserves for everyone to enjoy.

How to Get a Florida Fishing and Hunting License or Permit

ALERT → New “Shoreline Fishing License” required Starting on August 1, 2009.

You can get your fishing license on the phone and be instantly licensed. So if you find yourself on the dock with a fishing pole it’s still not to late.

When you apply for a license or permit, you’ll need to provide name, identification (drivers license number or social security number), date of birth, and address.  Some of the licenses have discounts for Florida residents age 65 and military personnel.

You can apply and purchase a Florida fishing license and permit from a county tax collector’s office or online.  Fishing and hunting licenses can also be purchased from sporting good stores and retailers selling fishing and hunting equipment.

Insider Tip: Instant Fishing or Hunting License by Phone Get your fishing license by calling 1-888-347-4356. If you find yourself about to go fishing without a license you can call this toll free number, get your license, and be legal. If you plan to fish or hunt in the state of Florida, you must have a license or permit. This applies to residents or non-residents and recreation or commercial purposes.  The state agency that regulates and issues the licenses and permits is the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission


A Tarpon on the line in the Florida Keys

Fishing or Hunting License or Permit Application Online

Fishing License by Phone call 1-888-Fish Florida (1-888-347-4356)

Hunting License by Phone call 1-888-Hunt Florida (1-888-486-8356)

Types of Fishing and Hunting Licenses

Commercial Fishing License
If you plan to sell fish, shellfish or any other marine life you must apply for a commercial fishing license.  Commercial fishing applies to dealers or collectors who fish and trap clams, crabs, crawfish, frogs, lobsters, shrimp, freshwater or saltwater fish, and any other type of seafood.

Recreational Fishing and Hunting License
If you fish, hunt, or track for recreational purposes including quota hunts, alligator, deer, falconry, hogs, ducks, geese, wild turkeys, raccoon, bobcat, manatees, otter, saltwater fish, freshwater fish, or any other animal, you must obtain a Florida fishing or hunting license and/or permit.

You must also obtain a license if you operate an airboat, charter fishing, operate a hunting preserve or game farm, and operate guided tours. 

If you have any questions on whether you need a license or permit, or the Florida laws for hunting and fishing, please contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission online, by calling 850-488-4676, or by mail at Farris Bryant Bulding, 620 S Meridian Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399.

Shoreline Fishing License

As of August 1, 2009, Florida Residents fishing from the shoreline or a structure on the shoreline (such as bridges and piers) need a state fishing license. The license cost is $9 for a year.

A one year Florida saltwater fishing license that covers both shoreline and watercraft recreational fishing is $17. 

Note that if you purchase the $9 license and later want to fish from a boat then you will pay the full $17 so it makes sense to purchase the $17 license and avoid the extra $9.

How to Report Wildlife Violators

If you suspect someone is fishing or hunting without a license or permit or violating a law, please help the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission by calling 1-888-403-3922 or submit the violation report online.  There is an award program where you can receive up to $1,000 for notifying the agency.

Comments about: Florida Fishing and Hunting License

I am 65 years old and a WalMart employee (went to buy a license) told me I didn’t need a license for hunting and fishing.  Is this info correct?

By charles descheneaux on 02-03-2009

Good News, there are a few exemptions and being 65 or older is one of them.  There are different rules (and exemptions) for Freshwater Fishing and Saltwater Fishing licenses. Here is a quote from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on freshwater fishing licenses:

“Although youth under 16 and seniors over 65, or anglers fishing in their county of residence with a cane pole do not need licenses, by buying one they contribute to conservation, and help the state recover more of your Federal tax money for sport fish restoration.”

You can see all the rules for freshwater here:

And the Saltwater fishing rules are here: http://marinefisheries.org/license.htm

By Inside Florida on 02-20-2009

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