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Florida is conducive to year-round fishing which makes The Villages a perfect community to offer ample fishing opportunities for those who wish to wet a hook and line. To ensure your fishing experience is enjoyable, it is important to know the rules and regulations for fishing these water bodies. The Village Community Development Districts and the State’s Water Management Districts who oversee and manages these water bodies, which serves several purposes for the community, also provides anglers fishable areas for their recreational enjoyment.
Recommended Fishing Locations
In order to have a healthy and manageable fishery available for anglers the Village Community Development Districts (VCDD) along with the Freshwater Fishing Club has outlined expectations for those anglers wanting to fish the bodies of water within the boundaries of The Villages in accordance with the following conditions:
- All fishermen are required to comply with federal, state and local laws, statutes and ordinances while fishing within the boundaries of The Villages. (Licenses are required for those 16 years of age or older. No license is required for those over 65 with proof of age.) For licensing information visit www.MyFWC.com. . Licensing can be purchases at your local Wal-Mart.
- Fishermen may fish in any lake, canal or stream, whether natural or man made, which can be reached without crossing over or trespassing upon any privately owned property or golf courses.
- Fishermen are prohibited to fish in Lake Sumter, Harmeswood or other areas with "No Fishing" signs posted.
- Any person crossing into jurisdictional wetlands is in volition of state and federal law and may be prosecuted.
- If you have any questions regarding this policy, please call Recreation Administration at 352-674-1800.
Thanks to the contributions of the Freshwater Fishing Club, the Recreation Department has a Rod Loaner Program which is available at La Hacienda, Lake Miona and Rohan Regional Recreation Centers. It is a “free-rental” system where, upon request, rods and reels can be checked-out with a Villages ID or Guest ID card. You may contact the La Hacienda at 753-1716, Lake Miona at 430-2950 or Rohan at 674-8400 for more information. If you would like more information you may attend The Fresh Water Fishing Club meeting which is held the second Tuesday of the month, 6:30pm at the Lake Miona Regional Recreation Center.
The VCDD practices catch and release. Catch and release is defined as “a practice within recreational fishing intended as a technique of conservation. After capture, the fish are unhooked and returned to the water before experiencing serious exhaustion or injury.” This definition goes hand in hand with the core values of The Villages and the VCDD.
Going Fishin'BY ELIZABETH LESTER
It is widely known across the Sunshine State that if an individual resides near a pond, lake or river,
the old rod and reel comes into play. That’s because Florida is one of the few states that is conducive
to year-round fishing.