Hunting is a pastime enjoyed by many. It offers the opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy nature while bonding with friends and family. Plus, if things go well, there will be plenty of fresh, locally-sourced meat afterwards.
Florida has some excellent hunting grounds that can be enjoyed by those new to the sport or seasoned veterans. Some of our popular game species include white-tailed deer, wild turkey, and wild hog. White-tailed deer is the most popular game hunted in Florida.
There are regulations regarding the taking of deer, so make sure you check the Florida Fish and Wildlife website at myfwc.com for complete rules. Deer are found in a variety of landscapes, often in areas where two or more different types of habitat meet. They prefer feeding at dusk and dawn.
There are two subspecies of wild turkey in Florida, the eastern variety and the Osceola. These woodlands birds are often found in open forests and along forest edges. They tend to roost in trees within cypress ponds, hardwood bottoms, creeks, or ravines. Turkey calls can give hunters an edge when it comes to bagging a gobbler.
Wild hogs are found throughout Florida. They can be hunted on private property with landowner permission year-round using any legal-to-own rifle, shotgun, muzzleloader, bow, crossbow, pistol, or air gun. There is no size or bag limit, and either sex may be taken. The best part is, no hunting license is required.
We hope that the next time you venture out into the wilderness to exercise your prowess in the field, whether it’s your first hunt or your fiftieth, that you’ll become a hunter on a mission, and donate a portion of your harvest to Wild Game Food Bank. You’ll be providing for your community by doing something you love.
This column is sponsored by Wild Game Food Bank.
BIO: Caitlin Meadows is the founder of Wild Game Food Bank. She proudly serves the community in this capacity while enjoying life as a wife, mom, and REALTOR®. A UF graduate and Gainesville native, Caitlin and her family have called Polk County home for the last ten years. Her husband is an avid hunter, which is what helped fuel the inspiration behind WGFB. Caitlin and her husband enjoy spending time outdoors with their son, attending church, and managing their cattle and chickens. To learn more about WGFB, go to wildgamefoodbank.com.