When hunting in the Blackwater WMA, a quota permit is required during general gun, family, quail and archery/muzzleloading gun seasons. Recreational access is allowed.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission says that the Blackwater WMA, the Blackwater Carr Unit, and Blackwater Hutton Unit, are comprised of more than 200,000 acres in Okaloosa and Santa Rosa counties and is one of the largest state forests in Florida. The forest’s natural stands of longleaf pine are among the best remaining examples of the longleaf pine/wiregrass ecosystem that once covered much of the southeastern United States.
Other natural communities found on the area include hardwood swamps, mixed loblolly pine and hardwoods, and pitcher plant bogs. Some of the most beautiful stands of Atlantic white cedar in the state are found along the banks of the Blackwater River and its tributaries. The forest is critical habitat for many listed plants and animals, including the red-cockaded woodpecker, the pine barrens treefrog, the gopher tortoise, and the panhandle lily. Blackwater’s outstanding forest and water resources offer excellent opportunities for hunting, fishing, wildlife viewing, hiking, biking, camping, swimming, horseback riding, and paddling. A portion of the Florida National Scenic Trail traverses the area and is open to hikers year round.