Gopher Tortoise Relocation

The state regulations regarding gopher tortoises have changed. In September 2007, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) uplisted the gopher tortoise to a state threatened species. As part of this uplisting, the FWC approved a gopher tortoise management plan that encourages the relocation of gopher tortoises to protected lands and severely restricts the use of take permits except in emergency situations. In addition, it required certifications for individuals conducting gopher tortoise surveys, applying for permits, or relocating gopher tortoises. Gopher tortoise surveys, permitting, and relocation are specialties of Flatwoods. We have sixteen FWC authorized gopher tortoise agents with a combined 100 years of experience working with gopher tortoises. Our agents are authorized to:

  • Conduct tortoise surveys and vegetation assessments

  • Complete permit applications for relocations and recipient sites

  • Transport and mark tortoises

  • Collect blood samples

  • Relocate tortoises by hand capture, backhoe excavation, trapping, and pulling rods

We offer a full-service solution for gopher tortoise permitting and relocation. We have qualified agents to obtain the permit and supervise the excavation, as well as a team of contractors to install required fencing and provide necessary equipment and experienced operators. Our staff has permitted several gopher tortoise mitigation banks and maintains a close working relationship with several others to streamline the permitting process and provide the client with options based on your project needs and budget. Whether your project requires a 10 or fewer burrow permit, conservation permit, temporary exclusion permit, or even if you are considering creating a gopher tortoise conservation bank on your property, Flatwoods can break down the new permitting options and provide the most streamlined solution for your project.