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Public meetings scheduled to consider Critical Wildlife Areas (CWAs)

Critical Wildlife Areas (CWAs) are established by the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) under the Florida Administrative Code to protect important wildlife concentrations from human disturbance during critical periods of their life cycles, such as nesting or migration. The landowner must support the CWA designation before a site can be considered for establishment. For each CWA, the boundaries and periods of time when portions of the area may be posted are defined in the CWA establishment order. Public access is restricted within CWAs only if posted, "Closed to public access." Dogs, vehicles and vessels are also prohibited from posted areas. The boundary of a CWA may be larger than the posted area because the areas suitable for wildlife may shift. This also allows for only those areas important for wildlife to be posted at any given time. Thus, the area closed within the CWA boundary each year may change.

If you are not able to attend one of the meetings listed below, you can provide comment by emailing Please include the specific CWA name in the subject line.

Public Workshop Schedule

The FWC is working on a statewide effort to conserve Florida's most vulnerable wildlife by creating and modifying Critical Wildlife Areas throughout the state. Visit the link below to learn about the CWA public workshops and how you can be part of the discussion.

Workshops in southwest Florida:

Myakka River (Sarasota County)
5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 19, 2016
North Port Public Library
13800 S. Tamiami Trail, North Port, FL 34287
More information »

Roberts Bay Islands(Sarasota County)
6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Celery Fields Nature Center, Sarasota Audubon Society
999 Center Rd. Sarasota, FL 34240
More information »

Dot-Dash-Dit Islands (Manatee County)
6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Thursday, July 21, 2016 Rescheduled to August 11th, same time.
Manatee County Library
6750 US Highway 301 North, Ellenton, FL 34222-3030

Pine Island Sound (Lee County)
6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, August 9, 2016
Ding Darling Education Center
1 Wildlife Drive, Sanibel, FL 33957

Estero Bay (Lee County)
5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Fort Myers Regional Library, Meeting Room AB
2450 First St, Fort Myers, FL 33901

Two CWAs are already in place in southwest Florida: Myakka River and LIttle Estero Island.