News Releases

Help from Ocala WMA hunters sought

News Release

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Media contact: Joy Hill, 352-258-3426

The U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) hopes that hunters scouting or hunting in the Hopkins Prairie Unit of the Ocala Wildlife Management Area may be able to help find parts still missing from a Harrier jet that crashed last month in the Ocala National Forest.

According to Lt. Col. Craig Wirth, USMC, the missing parts are an engine hub and fan blades. The hub is metal and similar in shape and size to a car's wheel rim.  It weighs 125 pounds and will be damaged from the crash.  It is made up of three individual discs that are normally connected, but may be in pieces.  As many as 50 fan blades may still be attached to the hub.

Wirth said the crash actually occurred in the Juniper Wilderness Area of the Ocala National Forest near the Yearling trail head and Silver Glen spring, but the debris field begins about 2.5 miles north, in the Hopkins Prairie Unit.

The hub and fan blades are safe to handle.  Wirth requests that anyone who finds them call him at 703-346-8295 (primary) or 252-466-4126 (secondary) or e-mail at for instructions. 

FWC Facts:
Divers must make reasonable efforts to stay within 300 feet of a divers-down flag on open waters and within 100 feet of a flag within rivers, inlets or navigation channels.

Learn More at AskFWC