LATEST NEWS

FWC Rescue

Call for Applications to Assist the Recreational Fishing Industry

The Maverick Boat Group, manufacturer of Cobia, Pathfinder, Maverick and Hewes boats is working with the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida to distribute $20,000 in small grants of $500 to $2,000 to Florida fishing guides and others in the recreational fishing industry who have sustained significant losses during Hurricane Irma.

The Foundation is requesting applicants complete a simple form outlining the nature of their business or work in Florida’s recreational fishing industry and outlining the extent of their uninsured losses due to the hurricane. Applicants are also encouraged to submit up to five pre- and post-Irma photographs documenting their damage.

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BlueGreen Logo
Mr. Adam Putnam

Adam Putnam to Speak at Conservation & Hurricane Irma Relief Fundraiser

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam will be the featured speaker at this week’s BlueGreen 2017, the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida’s annual fund-raising dinner.

The October 21st evening event will be held at the Florida Aquarium in downtown Tampa. Monies raised will support conservation and outdoor recreation in Florida, including summer camps and other outdoor programs for youth.

A portion of the proceeds will also be devoted to assisting Fish & Wildlife Commission (FWC) officers and biologists whose homes have been lost or badly damaged by Hurricane Irma. One hundred, twenty-five FWC staff traveled to Houston to rescue more than 500 people caught in the floodwaters of Hurricane Harvey, only to experience the worst of Hurricane Irma at home.

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BlueGreen Logo

Fish & Wildlife Foundation of FL to Host Conservation & Hurricane Irma Relief Fundraiser

Florida conservation, outdoor youth programs and Hurricane Irma assistance are the beneficiaries of this week’s BlueGreen 2017 fund raiser at the Florida Aquarium in Tampa.

More than 40 Florida companies are sponsors of the Saturday, Oct. 21st evening event, which is being held by the nonprofit Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida. Principal sponsors include the Mosaic Company, Hancock Whitney Bank, Contender Boats and Bass Pro Shops.

“We are proud to partner with the Fish & Wildlife Foundation to support their continued conservation efforts and their promotion of outdoor recreation,” says Mosaic’s Mark Kaplan, VP of Phosphates Service. “Recognizing the impact that so many of our neighbors and employees experienced as a result of Hurricane Irma, BlueGreen 2017 provides our community and our company with an opportunity to give back to FWC’s first responders as their families also recover from the storm.”

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FWC Rescue

Hurricane Irma: Please Give to the Emergency Assistance Fund to help FWC Families and the Fishing Community

During Hurricane Harvey, 150 Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission [FWC] officers and specialists worked around the clock in Houston and surrounding cities and towns to rescue people trapped by the unprecedented flood waters. These FWC staff, and hundreds more like them, now face the challenges of Hurricane Irma, one of the strongest storms to hit the United States in recorded history.

The same is true for the Florida fishing community. Many of Florida’s fishing guides and family commercial fishermen and women have been badly affected by Hurricane Irma, with losses that insurance only partly covers.

The Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida is collecting donations to help with the widespread damage and destruction from Hurricane Irma and related recovery needs. Our hometown heroes that helped those in need in Texas now need our help. So do the guides and family commercial fishermen and women who make Florida’s fishing economy so vibrant and strong. --Please give today! No donation is too small. Thank you!!

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FWC Rescue

Gov. Scott: FWC Officers Rescue More Than 500 Texans

Before Monday morning, Braden and Kimberlie Dando had never heard of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Today, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) officers are continuing to actively assist with disaster response efforts in the Houston area. FWC officers have rescued more than 500 Texans since arriving in the area after being deployed by Governor Scott in response to Texas’ request for emergency assistance. Additionally, more than 400 Florida volunteers have been deployed to Texas and Louisiana as Volunteer Florida continues to coordinate the activities of 11 disaster relief organizations.

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FWC Rescue

Texas Mother’s Message to FWC Officers: “My Kids are Alive Because of you”

Before Monday morning, Braden and Kimberlie Dando had never heard of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Today, they say they owe their lives to the FWC officers who have been deployed to the Houston area to help rescue flood victims.

“If they didn’t show up I don’t what we would have done because we did not have a way to get out. I just want to thank them for what they did,” Braden, 25, said during a telephone interview from his mother-in-law’s house in Highlands, Texas.

The Dandos say their home in Dayton is gone, covered by the floodwaters from Hurricane Harvey that have devastated so many homes and lives in the Houston area.

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Calls for Proposals

Calls For Proposals

The Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida is dedicated to conservation, management and sustainable recreational enjoyment of Florida’s outstanding lands, waters and wildlife. Each year, the Foundation requests proposals for funding via the proceeds of sales of the “Wildlife Foundation of Florida” specialty license plate.

The Foundation is seeking grant applications that do one or more of the following:

  1. Improve wildlife management on hunting lands open to the public,
  2. Improve public access to, and amenities on, hunting lands open to the public,
  3. Increases the land available to the public for hunting,
  4. Fosters the shooting sports, including archery, in Florida
  5. Promotes gun safety and youth hunting, and
  6. Supports important hunting stakeholder meetings.

Public and private organizations, including nonprofits, colleges and universities, are eligible to apply for grants up to $125,000. Most grants will be in the $500 to $20,000 range. Complete details, instructions and a link to the online application system can be found at https://www.fishwildlifeflorida.org/wildlife-foundation-of-florida-grants/. The deadline for submission of proposals is September 30, 2017.

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Calls for Proposals

The & Wildlife Foundation of Florida is dedicated to the conservation and restoration of Florida’s world-renowned freshwater springs. Each year, the Foundation requests proposals for funding via the proceeds of sales of the “Protect Florida Springs” specialty license plate.

The Foundation is seeking the following:

  1. Research projects that lead to better understanding of, or directly address, one or more principal threats facing Florida’s springs. This can be site-specific research or research having the potential to impact multiple springs.
  2. Community education and other outreach activities that foster adoption of best practices in the restoration, management and conservation of freshwater springs or alter public attitudes and practices detrimental to spring conservation.

Grant requests up to $50,000 will be considered. The actual or potential conservation impact of each proposal will have strong bearing on the possibility of being funded. Public and private organizations, including nonprofits, colleges and universities, are eligible to apply. Complete details, instructions and a link to the online application system can be found at https://www.fishwildlifeflorida.org/protect-florida-springs-grants/. The deadline for submission of proposals is September 30, 2017.

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Dr. C.T. (Tom) Rainey

Founding FWFF Board Member has passed away

The Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida mourns the passing of one of its founding members. Dr. C.T. (Tom) Rainey, an honored Miami veterinarian, longtime active member of the Orange Bowl Committee and other civic organizations, passed away peacefully on June 15, 2017.

Tom was a founding member of the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida, serving from 1994 until 2010. He received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Florida Veterinary Medical Association in 1985 and the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Georgia in 2003. He was named to the Orange Bowl Committee in 1981, as well as to the Board of the Baptist Hospital Foundation.

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Red Snapper Fishing

Anglers can take advantage of more Gulf red snapper fishing starting this weekend

This Friday, June 16, begins the first weekend of an additional 39-day season for recreational red snapper fishing in Gulf federal waters and changes to the state season. The U.S. Department of Commerce announced these expanded fishing opportunities today, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) followed with an executive order setting the updated season in state waters. The 39-day season is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Friday, June 16, through Monday, Sept. 4. Also included are Monday and Tuesday, July 3 and 4, and Monday, Sept. 4.

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Savannah Bergeron

A Stitch in Time Saves Nine (or more) Turtles: Pembroke Pines Teenager Knits for Conservation

While most high school seniors spent the fall and winter sweating over their college admission essays, Pembroke Pines High School senior Savannah Bergeron polished hers off quickly. Then she got back to her passion of the last two years — creating hand-knitted turtles to raise money and awareness to conserve Florida’s wide variety of native turtles.

Florida has 26 species of turtles, more than any other state, including all five of the world’s endangered sea turtle species. The Sunshine State is also home to the gopher tortoise, an ancient race whose ancestors appeared in the western United States 60 million years ago.

Despite an almost complete ban on commercial turtle harvesting, Florida’s turtle populations, as elsewhere, continue to decline due to habitat loss and a thriving black market for turtle meat and shells. Many of Florida’s turtles are now threatened or endangered.

Savannah Bergeron wanted to bring attention to this situation and find a way to do something about it. In 2017, she began knitting and selling toy turtles to raise money for turtle conservation. To date, she has raised and donated $2,268 to the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida (FWFF) for turtle and tortoise conservation. She comes by her passion naturally; her great-great-grandfather was one of the first Everglades park rangers, and her grandfather is a commissioner of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).

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Sea To Shore Alliance

No Better Time to Help Protect Florida Springs

Florida’s freshwater springs are one of the world’s natural wonders. Beautiful and cool, they have provided an oasis for wildlife and humans for tens of thousands of years.  They are under threat from groundwater pollution and other environmental stresses, but you can help us protect them by buying the “Protect Florida Springs” license plate.  $25 from each plate comes to the Foundation to support research, education, restoration and conservation of these irreplaceable springs.  They may not hold the Fountain of Youth for us, but we have the ability to make sure they live forever.  Please check out our new Springs page, developed with our sister non-profit, Sea2Shore: http://sea2shore.org/ and our new Springs plate page https://flspringsplate.com/.  Thank you for supporting conservation!


Roseate spoonbill"The Foundation awarded $220,000 to manage 16 newly designated FWC Critical Wildlife Areas, which include rookeries for shorebirds and wading birds like the roseate spoonbill.” Photo Credit FWC.

Fish & Wildlife Foundation Awards $345,000 in Florida Conservation Grants

Children, bears and birds were the primary beneficiaries of $345,000 in conservation grants given out this week by the nonprofit Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida (FWFF).

Meeting on Key Largo, the FWFF Board of Directors approved a $100,000 grant to help local communities purchase bear-resistant trash cans for homeowners. This follows the Foundation’s 2016 grant of $325,000 for bear-resistant cans, which was matched by a $500,000 commitment by the State of Florida. Human-bear conflict is increased when food is in garbage cans that bears can open, said Foundation Board Chair Richard A. Corbett, in explaining the Foundation’s commitment to this program.

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Mr. Richard A. 'Dick' Corbett

Richard Corbett Named Foundation Chair

Tampa businessman and FWC Chairman Emeritus Richard A. “Dick” Corbett has been elected chair of the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida.

The appointment came during the March 27 – 28 meeting of the board of directors of the nonprofit foundation.

“I’m very pleased to be turning the gavel over to Dick Corbett,” said outgoing Foundation Chair Rodney Barreto, who is stepping down as chair to lead Miami’s preparation for the 2020 Super Bowl. “Dick is a life-long conservationist and outdoorsman and has served the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and our Foundation for many years. He brings considerable dedication and business acumen to this role.”

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Mr. Steve Crisafulli

Former FL House Speaker Steve Crisafulli Joins Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida Board

Civic leader and agribusinessman Steve Crisafulli has been appointed to a three-year term to the Board of Directors of the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida.

A seventh-generation Floridian, Mr. Crisafulli continues to work lands owned for nearly a century by his family from Merritt Island. He was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2008 and served as Speaker of the House for the 2014 – 2016 term, the first Brevard County native to do so.

Foundation Board Chair Rodney Barreto said he was delighted to welcome Mr. Crisafulli to the Board. “Steve has been an extraordinary leader in all of his community, business and legislative endeavors. His thoughtful pragmatism, deep ties to the land, and dedication to preserving Florida’s natural heritage and traditional outdoor past-times make him an ideal addition to our Board.”

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OTHER NEWS


Our Mission

The Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida works closely with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and other public and private partners to protect the full array of our state’s native animals and plants and the lands and waters they need to survive. We are also dedicated to ensuring public access to Florida’s outstanding natural areas, and we work closely with the Florida Youth Conservation Center Network to help provide 100,000 children and adolescents every year with formative outdoor experiences. Since 1994, the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida has raised and given away more than $25 million to support conservation. Recent grants include the following:

  • Given $325,000 to outfit the new Suncoast Youth Conservation Center in Apollo Beach with kayaks, fishing gear, binoculars, microscopes, aquariums, furniture and much more.
  • Purchased with Volusia County’s help a one-acre parcel in New Smyrna Beach as a public boat launch managed by the nonprofit Marine Discovery Center.
  • Made a $325,000 challenge grant, matched by a $500,000 State appropriation, to provide homeowners across Florida with bear-proof garbage cans to minimize bear-human conflicts.
  • Invested $36,000 in successful development of a smartphone app for reporting fish disease and mortality events.

Goliath Grouper

  • Made grants of $450,000 over the past three years to multiple organizations working to restore and conserve Florida’s famous freshwater springs.
  • Provided $70,000 for improving mobility-impaired access to state Wildlife Management Areas as well as funding for new deer-cleaning stations.
  • Provided $261,000 in research funds for the critically endangered Florida Grasshopper Sparrow.
  • Cooperated with the Florida Aquarium and Tampa Electric Company to grow native corals for restoring dead reefs in the Florida Keys.

Be a Force for Nature! Please donate today!