Airboating

Airboaters at Loxahatchee NWR

Airboat Permit Information

Beginning in the summer of 2020, airboat operation is allowed in designated areas of the refuge by permit only. There will be an open period when applicants can apply for an airboat permit lottery. To be considered for the lottery, applicants must successfully complete the Airboat Operator Course, read the special conditions, and fill and sign an Airboat Special Use Permit Application. Successful applicants will be notified by refuge staff of lottery results.

Airboat Rules and Regulations

All refuge regulations are found on the Rules and Regulations page of this website.

Airboat Inspections

Once an applicant has been chosen in the airboat permit lottery, they must bring their airboat to the refuge for a vessel inspection by Federal Wildlife Officers. View and/or print the Airboat Inspection List.

Airboat Inspection List:

  • Hull length is 16 feet maximum excluding the grass rake
  • Width is 8 feet maximum
  • Current State Registration Decal
  • Hull Identification Number
  • Minimum of 3 inches, FL #'s displayed on each side of the bow, or a minimum of 6
  • inch FL #'s displayed on both sides of rudders
  • Personal Flotation Device (PFD)
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Must have an automotive-style factory muffler per Florida Statute 327.391
  • Port and starboard lights (Coast Guard Requirement)
  • Working white aft light to be seen 360°
  • Orange Safety Flag 10” x 12" or larger, flown at a minimum of 10 feet above the waterline

Apply for an Airboat Permit

Click one of the following links to apply or learn more: 

Non-Hunting Airboat Permit

Alligator Hunt Airboat Permit 

Duck and Coot Hunt Airboat Permit

Deer Hunt Airboat Permit coming in 2021

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