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Tyndall Air Force Base

Tyndall Now Requires Permits to Visit East Shell Island, Crooked Island and Redfish/Davis Points

Tyndall Air Force Base's latest update to its hunting and fishing regulations require:

A "recreational permit" for access to Crooked Island and Shell Island

A "recreational permit" and a "DBIDS" (defense biometric) permit for access to shores of its "West Unit" (see map) which includes Redfish Point, our popular anchorage on the bay and the shores of Davis Point among other areas (see map here and at link below).

Tyndall leadership has taken input from Friends of Shell Island about these requirements, and we thank them for listening to us as we represented the boating community. They originally had Shell Island in the "West Unit" which would have required the DBIDS ID, but based on our talks, they removed that requirement by putting Shell Island into the "East Unit" along with Crooked Island. We would like to thank Col Derek France for making this decision.

We had recommended that they secure the "land bridge" between Shell and Crooked and the mainland access area of Tyndall AFB, then drop the requirement for a permit completely on the islands, however, our recommendation was not taken.

We have explained that most boaters will be unaware of the requirement for the permit at the islands, and in fact, people from out of town especially will not be in compliance because they will be unaware of the regulations and will not have time to apply.

We have also recommended that Tyndall move the boundary of the "West Unit" inward from Redfish Point, leaving the beach area permit-free, however that recommendation was not taken either.

To get the "recreation permit" you pay $15 a year and can apply online, here:

You can also see the regulation map and read the rules there. Tyndall recently upgraded this process to make it possible to do online, in response to our suggestions.

The "DBIDS" ID card has a much more rigorous application process which requires you to go to Tyndall physically.

Tyndall said that they are conducting random ID checks throughout the base property. Access to the West Unit without the DBIDS ID carries a charge of Federal Trespassing.

Here is the permit information from their website:

How to get your iSportsman permit

1. Non-DoD individuals must undergo a background check before purchasing a permit. To get started, complete this form and submit to the Security Forces Visitor Control Center, Bldg 2580, or via email ([email protected]), fax (850)283-2202, or mail to 325 SFS Attn: Pass & Registration, 515 Suwannee Rd, Tyndall AFB, FL 32403.

2. Register with iSportsman and select requested permits.

3. You will be notified by Natural Resources of the results of the background check no later than two weeks after submission.

4. Upon cleared background check, Natural Resources will "enable" your account to complete your permit purchase. Please print your permit and carry it when participating in Tyndall Hunting, Fishing, and General Recreation.

5. For non-DoD members accessing West Unit, a DBIDS card is required from the Visitor Center, Bldg 2580. Please bring your printed permit (hunters require hard card) and 2 forms of identification (one must be a photo ID). Click here for list of acceptable IDs/documents.

If you have questions or comments about these regulations, you can contact the Tyndall Public Affairs office at 850-283-4500 or email [email protected].

Please give us your feedback, too by contacting us at [email protected].

Tyndall Waterway Proposal Would Allow it to Close off Public Access 500 Feet from its Shores

In June of 2013, our members discovered that some new local waterway restrictions were going through the Federal approval process, and alerted us. We made all members aware, and after reading the proposal many boaters felt the restrictions were overly stringent, and made their voices known. Thanks to citizen uproar, Tyndall announced that they would withdraw the proposed waterway restrictions! We thank Tyndall AFB for listening to the citizens and for giving Friends of Shell Island an opportunity to weigh in.

Below you will find links and information explaining the evolution of this "waterway security regulation" and Friends of Shell Island's counter-proposal. Since Tyndall reworked their proposal, in June 2015 they came forward with a new proposal that removes Shell Island and Crooked Island from the security zones! We are very appreciative of their efforts, and especially appreciate that these islands are uninhabited and used mainly for recreational purposes. Thank you, Tyndall, for listening to the citizens! Tyndall's Wing Commander met with Friends of Shell Island and the News Herald Editorial Board on June 2; more information about this meeting can be found in this News Herald story.

Friends of Shell Island still has some concerns about the remaining waterway regulations. Here is our final response to the 2015 proposal. Your comments are requested here. The deadline for comments is October 14, so please comment before then!

WJHG, Oct. 1, 2015: Public Encouraged to Offer Feedback on Tyndall's Waterway Security Proposal

News Herald: Comment Period Open on Tyndall Waterway Proposal

Tyndall Waterway Discussion on the Derrell Day Show. March 7, 2014 - Part 1 (click to download MP3 audio file)

Tyndall Waterway Discussion on the Derrell Day Show. March 7, 2014 - Part 2 (click to download MP3 audio file)

February 2014 WMBB Newscast: "Tyndall holds second public meeting"

February 2014 News Herald Article about Mexico Beach Meeting

January 2014 News Channel 7 WJGH story on the Tyndall Waterway Restriction Proposal

Our Counter-Proposal

Friends of Shell Island has created a counter-proposal to Tyndall's proposed waterway restrictions that we believe protects the base while better preserving boater access. Click here to read the counter-proposal:

Tyndall Waterway Restrictions Counter-Proposal (click to view)

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