Chassahowitzka

National Wildlife Refuge - Florida

Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge is located on the west coast of Florida, about 70 miles (110 km) north of St. Petersburg. It is famous as the southern wintering site for the re-introduced eastern population of whooping cranes.

brochures

Brochure of Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).Chassahowitzka - Brochure

Brochure of Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).

Birds of Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).Chassahowitzka - Birds

Birds of Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).

Hunting Regulations for Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).Chassahowitzka - Hunting

Hunting Regulations for Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Florida. Published by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS).

Chassahowitzka NWR https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Chassahowitzka/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chassahowitzka_National_Wildlife_Refuge Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge is located on the west coast of Florida, about 70 miles (110 km) north of St. Petersburg. It is famous as the southern wintering site for the re-introduced eastern population of whooping cranes.
Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge 1502 Southeast Kings Bay Drive Crystal River, FL 34429 352/563 2088 www.fws.gov/chassahowitzka U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service 1 800/344 WILD http://www.fws.gov May 2010 U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge Located about 65 miles north of St. Petersburg, the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge is comprised This blue goose, designed by J. N. of approximately 31,000 acres of saltwater bays, estuaries and brackish “Ding” Darling, marshes with a fringe of hardwood has become the swamps along the eastern boundary. symbol of the National Wildlife The northern boundary parallels and includes some of the Homosassa Refuge System. River. The refuge extends southward across the scenic Chassahowitzka River for 12 miles to its southern boundary at Raccoon Point. USFWS Habitat and Wildlife The refuge was established in 1943 primarily to benefit waterfowl in an area long famous as a wintering location for ducks and coots. Today, although waterfowl numbers in central Florida have declined, the refuge has become increasingly important for the endangered West Indian manatees which utilize many of the refuge’s tidal bays, creeks and rivers. USFWS Chassahowitzka is one of more than 540 refuges included within the National Wildlife Refuge System. This unique network of lands and waters, administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is managed specifically for the protection of wildlife and wildlife habitat, and represents the most comprehensive wildlife resource management program in the world. cover photo: USFWS Chassahowitzka is unspoiled estuarine habitat along Florida’s west coast that serves as an important breeding and feeding ground for marine life. Inland from the bays are the brackish creeks and ponds where muskgrass, watermilfoil and other foods grow in abundance. The eastern boundary provides a few thousand acres of swamp habitat where oaks, cypress and red cedar grow. The outer islands consist mainly of red and black mangrove which provided habitat for colonial birds. Many species of birds, including double-crested cormorants, great blue herons, green herons, ospreys, white pelicans, and various species of waterfowl and songbirds are observed on the refuge. Other animals inhabiting the refuge include numerous alligators and raccoons. River otters are seen occasionally exhibiting their aquatic skills. Deer, turkey, black bear, and predators such as the bobcat are occasional residents of the refuge. Endangered and threatened species including nesting bald eagles, West Indian manatees, woodstorks, green sea turtles, Eastern indigo snakes and an occasional peregrine falcon are observed on the refuge. The refuge provides a place for approximately 250 species of birds, over 50 species of reptiles and amphibians and at least 25 different species of mammals. Because of this, visitors are likely to see a variety of animals during a journey through the refuge. photo: USFWS/Joyce Kleen photo: Capt. Larry D. Campbell photo: Mike Lockart photo: USFWS Shallow bays support an abundant growth of wigeon-grass which provides food for various birds and the endangered manatee. photo: USFWS photo: USFWS Management Management objectives are oriented toward preserving and protecting the land and wildlife resources of the refuge. This requires an active law enforcement program designed to prevent disturbance of wildlife populations and the destruction of habitat. The entire state of Florida is a fire ecosystem that has historically burned every three to ten years. Prescribed fire is used on the refuge to mimic the natural fire regime. This improves habitat and food availability for several wildlife species including endangered and threatened species. Seventy-six percent of the refuge is a designated Wilderness Area meaning land that will remain undeveloped and preserved in its natural state. photo: George Gentry Visiting the refuge The refuge is only accessible by boat. Public boat ramps in the area of the refuge are limited, so visitors are advised to consult the enclosed map for the boat ramp access. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Units of the National Wildlife Refuge System stretch across the United States from northern Alaska to the Florida Keys, and include small islands in the Caribbean and South Pacific. The character of the refuges is as diverse as the nation itself. Because of the need to protect refuge lands and wildlife resources, special regulations have been enacted. These regulations concern public access and use of the refuge. Between April 1 and August 31, special posted slow speed restrictions zone apply to portions of the Chassahowitzka River for the protection of manatees. Airboat Use Airboat use on the refuge is restricted to Hernando County waters and posted routes in Citrus County. Operators are required to have a refuge airboat permit. Free permits, which describe refuge r
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Chassahowitzka and Crystal River National Wildlife Refuges Bird List Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge was established on August 17, 1983. The refuge is comprised of several islands, totaling 46 acres. They are surrounded by the crystal clear, spring fed waters of Kings Bay. The refuge was established for the protection of the endangered West Indian manatees. Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge provides critical winter habitat for approximately twenty percent of the nation’s manatee population. Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1943. The refuge is comprised of 31,000 acres of saltwater bays, estuaries and brackish marshes with a fringe of hardwood swamps along the eastern boundary. This unspoiled estuarine habitat along Florida’s west coast serves as important breeding and feeding ground for marine life. The refuge provides habitat for over 200 species of birds. Chassahowitzka and Crystal River National Wildife Refuges cover photo: USFWS The Blue Goose is the symbol of the National Wildlife Refuge System. This checklist includes 207 species of birds and is based on observations by refuge personnel and visiting ornithologists. If you should find an unlisted species, please let us know at Refuge Headquarters. We appreciate your help in updating our records. Note: This list contains only coastal birds expected or seen on the refuge and does not include a lot of endemic land birds. The refuges are accessible only by boat. Public boat ramps in the areas of the refuges are limited, so visitors are advised to consult general refuge leaflets for the boat ramp access. Commercial guides are available in the towns of Crystal River, Homosassa and Chassahowitzka for boat tours on the refuges. The bird checklist was designed to be informative and simple to use. The list is arranged in the order established by the American Ornithological Union. Symbols which appear in this checklist represent the following: Seasonal appearance Sp S F W Spring, March - May Summer, June - August Fall, September - November Winter, December - February Seasonal abundance a. abundant (a common species which is very numerous) c. common (certain to be seen in suitable habitat) u. uncommon (present but not certain to be seen) o. occasional (seen only a few times during a season) r. rare (seen at intervals of 2 to 5 years) * known or suspected to have nested on refuge or known to nest locally. photo: USFWS photo: Nick Milam How to use your checklist cover photo: Mike Haramis SP S F W Loons ___Common Loon u r u u Grebes ___Pied-billed Grebe* ___Horned Grebe ___Eared Grebe a u r u a u r a u r Pelicans ___American White Pelican ___Brown Pelican* c a r a c a c a Cormorants ___Double-crested Cormorant* a a a a Darters ___Anhinga* c c c c Frigatebirds ___Magnificent Frigatebird u u u u Herons and Bitterns ___American Bittern ___Least Bittern* ___Great Blue Heron* ___Great Egret* ___Snowy Egret* ___Little Blue Heron* ___Tricolored Heron* ___Reddish Egret* ___Cattle Egret* ___Green Heron* ___Black-crowned Night Heron * ___Yellow-crowned Night Heron* o u a a a a a o u c c u o u a a a a a o c c c u o u a a a a a o c c c u u Ibises and Spoonbills ___White Ibis* ___Glossy Ibis ___Roseate Spoonbill a r r a r r a r r a r r Storks ___Wood Stork* c c c c Swans, Geese, and Ducks ___Snow Goose ___Wood Duck* ___Green-winged Teal ___American Black Duck ___Mottled Duck* ___Mallard ___Northern Pintail ___Blue-winged Teal r c o o c u u c c c u o c o u c r c u o c c u c c o a a a a a o c c c SP o o c o u u u o u u c r S r r o r o o o u r F o o c o u o o c o o c r W o o c o u u u c u u c r Vultures ___Black Vulture* ___Turkey Vulture* a a a a a a a a Hawks ___Osprey* ___American Swallow-tailed Kite* ___Bald Eagle* ___Northern Harrier ___Sharp-shinned Hawk ___Cooper’s Hawk ___Red-shouldered Hawk* ___Broad-winged Hawk ___Short-tailed Hawk ___Red-tailed Hawk* c c u c c u a u r u c c o o c c u c c u a c u c c u a u u Falcons ___American Kestrel* ___Peregrine Falcon c o u r c o c o Turkey and Quail ___Wild Turkey* ___Northern Bobwhite* u c u c u c u c Rails, Gallinules, Coots, and Cranes ___Yellow Rail r r ___Black Rail* o o o ___Clapper Rail* c c c ___King Rail* u u u ___Virginia Rail u u ___Sora c c ___Common Moorhen* a a a ___American Coot* u u u ___Limpkin* r r r ___Sandhill Crane* u u u ___Whooping Crane u u u (introduced to Chassahowitzka in year 2002) r o c u u c a u r u u ___Northern Shoveler ___Gadwall ___American Wigeon ___Canvasback ___Redhead ___Ring-necked Duck ___Greater Scaup (Coastal) ___Lesser Scaup ___Bufflehead ___Hooded Merganser ___Red-breasted Merganser ___Ruddy Duck u a u r u SP S F W Plovers ___Black-bellied Plover ___Snowy Plover ___Wilson’s Plover* ___Semipalmated Plover ___Killdeer* c u u u a u u u r c c u u u a c u u u a Oystercatchers ___American Oystercatcher*
General Hunting Regulations Hunting is prohibited within 100 yards of any navigable waterway or residential area. Boats Boats must be removed from the area daily. Conventional boats are allowed on all open areas of Chassahowitzka Refuge. Airboats are prohibited in all refuge waters in Citrus County except on the designated airboat routes, where a refuge airboat permit is required. (Airboat permits maybe obtained from the refuge office.) Firearms must be unloaded and encased and/or dismantled when transported by boat to and from the hunt areas. Target shooting or other forms of practice shooting are prohibited on the refuge. The use of dogs shall be in accordance with state regulations. Hunt Closures Hunts on Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge may be altered or closed in cases of emergency situations (floods, fire, or other circumstances) by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The search or removal of any object of antiquity is prohibited. Hernando County Unit Public hunting in Hernando County will be in accordance with State regulations for the Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area. A Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area stamp is required in addition to other state hunting stamps and licenses for upland hunting and big game. Citrus County Unit Public hunting in Citrus County will be in accordance with the following special hunting regulations and applicable State regulations. Season The open season for ducks and coots is concurrent with seasons established by the State of Florida. Hunt Days Waterfowl hunting is permitted only on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Huntable Species Only ducks and coots may be taken. Bag Limit State bag limits apply. Hunt Area Hunting is permitted in all areas of the Citrus County portion of the refuge except for the posted No Hunting Area. A map of the area open to hunting is found in this brochure. All hunters must possess a valid Florida Permits, Stamps, & State Hunting License and valid (signed) refuge hunting permit. Waterfowl hunters Licenses must possess a Florida Waterfowl Permit, except children under 16 and Florida residents 65 and older. In addition, all waterfowl hunters age 16 and older must possess a valid (signed) Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (Federal Duck Stamp). Nontransferable permits are required for all hunters regardless of age or disability and must be carried on the person while hunting. Non-toxic shot Only steel or approved non-toxic shot may be used. Possession of lead or other toxic shot in any gauge is prohibited. Blinds Only temporary blinds are permitted. Hunters must not construct permanent blinds. Season The open season for small game, big game, and migratory birds is concurrent with seasons established by the State of Florida. Only steel or approved non-toxic shot may be used. Possession of lead or other toxic shot in any gauge is prohibited. Blinds Only temporary blinds are permitted. Hunters must not construct permanent blinds. Decoys Decoys must be removed from the area daily. Dogs The use of dogs shall be in accordance with Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area regulations. Fishing Regulations Open year-round. Season Permit Refuge permits are not required for fishing. License State regulations apply. State regulations apply. Creel limits, etc. Please respect the following signs This sign clearly marks all refuge property. It is your responsibility to know where the property lines are and hunt within the boundaries. Hunt Days The Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area regulations shall apply for Archery, Muzzeloading Gun, and General Gun hunt days. Huntable Species The Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area regulations shall apply for huntable species. No hunting is permitted in this designated area. Bag Limit Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area bag and possession limits apply. Hunt Area Hunting is permitted in all areas of the Hernando portion of the refuge. A map of the area open to hunting is found in this brochure. All hunters must possess a valid Florida Permits, Stamps, & State Hunting License and valid (signed) refuge hunting permit. Waterfowl hunters Licenses must possess a Florida Waterfowl Permit, except children under 16 and Florida residents 65 and older. In addition, all waterfowl hunters age 16 and older must possess a valid (signed) Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (Federal Duck Stamp). Nontransferable permits are required for all hunters regardless of age or disability and must be carried on the person while hunting. MANATEE ZONE SLOW SPEED MINIMUM WAKE This sign designates a manatee slow speed zone. During the effective period, ensure vessel bow is completely settled in the water. Operate at a speed which does not produce a rolling wake. National Wilderness Area BOUNDARY U.S. FISH &WILDLIFE SERVICE R PA Firearms Dogs Non-toxic shot DE Airboats are confined to navigable waters in Hernando County. Operation of airboat

also available

National Parks
USFS NW