Harvesting alligators from the wild
Importing alligators or parts
Alligators in captivity (exhibition, sale, or as pets)
Harvesting alligators from the wild
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has three programs that provide for harvesting alligators from the wild.
- Statewide Alligator Harvest Program,
- Private Lands Alligator Management Program, and
- Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program
Each of these programs provides unique opportunities for participation.
Licenses are also required for alligator processing and farming.
Statewide Alligator Harvest Program (Limited Entry Hunts)
Application dates for the Statewide Alligator Harvest Program
Information for New Applicants
Successful applicant should receive their license, permit and tags by the end of July.
To hunt alligators in Florida, you must have an:
- Alligator Trapping License
- Alligator trapping permits and CITES tags
IMPORTANT NOTICE: Review the license, permit and fee information on the Statewide Alligator Hunt Permit information page before purchasing a trapping license or applying for permits and tags. Specifics on the seasons and methods can found by visiting our Statewide Alligator Hunt webpage.
Private Lands Alligator Management Program
The Private Lands Alligator Management Program allows the harvest of non-hatchling alligators and collection of alligator eggs and/or hatchlings on specified private lands. The private land owner (or his designee) would be required to be licensed (an Alligator Trapping License for adult harvest, and an Alligator Farming License for eggs and hatchlings) and permitted (with appropriate tags for adults and hatchlings) to take alligators or alligator eggs on that property. To download an information package, go to the Private Lands Alligator Program webpage.
Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program
The FWC contracts with a limited number of private individuals, "Nuisance Alligator Trappers," to remove specific nuisance alligators. Nuisance alligators may only be handled by contracted Nuisance Alligator Trappers. To learn more, please visit our Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program webpage.
Persons helping Alligator trappers in any of these programs can become licensed as their agents ($51.50 fee) online, using the toll-free phone number, 1-888-HUNT-FLORIDA (1-888-486-8356), or by going to a tax collector's office or license agent (retail outlet that sells hunting and fishing licenses). Additional permits and tags are required to harvest alligators.
Because the alligator hide and meat market is extremely volatile, alligator farming is a very tenuous business. For a primer on what alligator farming involves, visit our Alligator Farming webpage.
A license is also required to buy and process lawfully acquired alligators and to sell the alligator meat, hides and other parts. To find an application, visit the Alligator Farming webpage.
A permit is required to import or export live alligatorsor alligat or parts. Contact the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service at 305-526-2610 regarding country to country export laws, or visit their website (http://www.fws.gov/permits/ImportExport/ImportExport.html).
Alligators in captivity
Live American alligators cannot be taken from the wild without a valid Alligator Trapping License. To possess lawfully acquired American alligators for educational purposes, exhibition, or sale to permitted facilities, you must have a Class II License to Possess Wildlife for Exhibition or Public Sale issued by the FWC Captive Wildlife Program.
To possess lawfully acquired American alligators for personal use, you must have a Class II Personal Pet License. Applicants must be 18 years old, not convicted of certain wildlife related violations and demonstrate 1 year and 1,000 hours of substantial practical experience in the handling, husbandry and care of alligators or other crocodilian species. Activities must be documented and caging requirements apply.
For more information read the Captive Wildlife Rules and Regulations.