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Alligator Super Hunt? Applications Now Open for Florida Gator Hunting

FWC opens app season for statewide alligator harvest permits and new Alligator Super Hunt.

Alligator Super Hunt? Applications Now Open for Florida Gator Hunting

This huge Florida gator caught by Kevin Brotz and friends on Aug. 25, 2023 weighed 900 pounds and measured more than 13 feet. Applications for 2024 harvest permits are now open in the state. (Photos courtesy of Kevin Brotz)

Last year, the tale of a giant Florida gator caught in August went viral, with interested readers learning that one of the state's largest gator had been harvested.

The story came about when Sunshine State alligator guide Kevin Brotz, who has hundreds of tagged gators to his credit, found himself in the eye of a news (and social-media) hurricane after tagging one of history’s biggest swamp lizards at a backwater lake near Orlando.

Brotz is a husband and father of three who runs the Git Bit Outdoors guide service and someone who has also enjoyed the Sunshine State’s hidden haunts and gator-hunting possibilities since he was a teen.

Still, the Aug. 25, 2023 gator hunt that Brotz enjoyed after securing a tag from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission was a crazy ordeal and ended up with him—along with the help of two friends from church—wrestling the huge gator into an aluminum jon boat. When it was all said and done, the gator tipped the scales at 900 pounds, measured 13 feet, 3 ¼ inches long, and took four hours to hook and land.

Yeah, that’s some kind of Florida adventure. According to FWC data only one other alligator has ever topped the weight of Brotz’s, a 1,043-pound gator harvested at Orange Lake in April 1989.

Now, It's Your Turn

Sound interesting? Well, if you’d like to experience some of the alligator-hunting adventure that Florida offers, the FWC has announced that the application season is now open for 2024 Statewide Alligator Harvest Permits along with the state’s new Alligator Super Hunt.

FWC says in a news release that applications for both opportunities opened Friday, May 3, 2024, and may be submitted at any county tax collector's office, license agent or online at GoOutdoorsFlorida.com

The agency notes that random drawings will be held to distribute all available alligator harvest permits for this year. While this might seem a little complicated, FWC also notes that those hunters who are awarded a permit will be automatically charged for an alligator trapping license and two hide validation tags, but those possessing an alligator trapping license that is valid through Dec. 31, 2024, will not be automatically charged for a license. 

FWC also says that a Florida hunting license is not required to participate in either the Alligator Super Hunt or the Statewide Alligator Harvest Program.

About the FWC Alligator Super Hunt

Brand new this year, the Alligator Super Hunt is an opportunity that FWC says offers a flexible alternative to the traditional statewide hunt. The agency says that each permit allocated allows the harvest of two alligators from most alligator management units and private property (with owner permission) Aug. 15-Dec. 31. 

Hunters lucky enough to participate in this Alligator Super Hunt will pay a nonrefundable $5 fee for each application according to the agency and may apply as many times as they want between 10 a.m. ET May 3 through 11:59 p.m. June 3. FWC says that applying multiple times will increase the chance of being drawn, and this year, 100 permits will be awarded.

For more information about the new Alligator Super Hunt, visit MyFWC.com/Alligator, and click on “NEW Alligator Super Hunt.”

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About the Statewide Alligator Harvest Program

FWC notes that since 1988, Florida's Statewide Alligator Harvest Program has been nationally and internationally recognized as a model program for the sustainable use of a natural resource like alligators. To see that it’s working, look only as far as Brotz’s successful hunt for an absolute monster of a gator last summer.

This year, the statewide alligator hunting season in Florida runs Aug. 15 – Nov. 8 according to FWC. The Tallahassee based agency notes that each permit allows the harvest of two alligators from a specific alligator management unit or county and this year, some 7,356 permits will be awarded. 

There is no cost to apply for these permits, but FWC indicates that credit card information must be submitted with the application, and applicants may only submit one application overall. 

The 2024 application periods for the FWC’s Statewide Alligator Harvest Program permits are as follows: 

  • Phase I: May 3 – May 13
  • Phase II: May 17 – May 27
  • Phase III: May 31 – June 10
  • Phase IV: June 13 – until filled.

For more information about the FWC’s Statewide Alligator Harvest Program in 2024, please visit MyFWC.com/Alligator, and then click on “Statewide Alligator Harvest Program.”




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