As part of a collaborative project between Mosaic, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Hardee County, the Florida Fishing Trail is set to open in the spring of this year.
Encompassing nine freshwater lakes and more than 260 acres of reclaimed land, the Florida Fishing Trail will be a premier catch-and-release fishing destination for anglers to enjoy. Four of the nine lakes included in the trail make up Hardee Lakes Park, which spans 1,200 acres.
In December 2023, the FWC collected more than 800 bass and crappie from one of Mosaic’s existing fish management areas and transferred them to the Trail’s lakes. This process will continue until the Trail opens, and the fish will eventually be self-sustaining populations.
As a fish management area, the mission of the trail is to encourage recreational catch-and-release fishing while maintaining healthy, freshwater fish populations and combat overfishing in Florida. All anglers will be required to have licensing and permitting upon entry to the trail, which can be obtained by checking in at the visitor station. Permits are lake specific. New permits must be obtained at the visitor station for each lake an angler wishes to visit.
“The goal of the Florida Fishing Trail is not only for anglers to enjoy some of the best fishing in Florida, but also to maximize the use of our reclaimed land,” said Director of Government and Public Affairs Heather Nedley. “We’re looking forward to the trail opening this spring and our continued collaboration with FWC and Hardee County.”