FWC Officers worked the annual Family Hunt within Blackwater WMA. On the evening of December 7, Officers Steve Hoomes and Danny Arnette, along with FWC Biologist Barbara Almario and FWC Wildlife Technicians Andrew Jernigan and Kevin McDonald, conducted the pre-hunt safety meeting attended by 43 children. The Munson Heritage Festival Committee assisted with logistics and support for this year’s hunt. Wal-Mart in Gulf Breeze provided door prizes for the participating youth hunters, as well as hot dogs and hamburgers cooked by FWC personnel during the safety meeting for all to enjoy. The Munson Fire Department hosted the check station site for the two-day hunt. This year’s two-day hunt resulted in 43 youth participating: Saturday, 30 permits were issued with two deer harvested; and Sunday, 25 permits issued with eight deer harvested. Of the 10 deer harvested, five were does, one was a legal buck, and four were antlered males. A special thank you goes out to the Munson Heritage Festival Committee, the Munson Fire Department, and Wal-Mart of Gulf Breeze for their support of this important event.

Officer Ben Pineda received a complaint through dispatch regarding two subjects trespassing on a hunt club’s land in Chumuckla. When Officer Pineda arrived, he observed two subjects leaving the area that matched the description of the subjects in the complaint. Officer Pineda made contact with the subjects and learned that they were in fact the two individuals who had been trespassing. While investigating this incident, Officer Pineda learned that one of the suspects was a convicted felon. The investigation is ongoing and charges are pending.

Officers Steve Hoomes and Brandon Lewis received a complaint through dispatch regarding shots fired near the community of Jay. The officers arrived on the scene and, after some investigating, found two freshly killed deer. After interviewing a suspect, they learned he shot the two deer from a hut using a light after dark. The subject was charged with taking deer at night with a gun and light.