Reminder for week: Wildlife, fishing, boating area visitors asked to respect natural resources
DOVER – To achieve public compliance through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between Feb. 13-19 made 1,840 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 18 vessel boardings for boating safety, hunting and fishing regulation compliance checks, issuing 10 citations. Officers responded to 21 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. An increased Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and associated recreational trail.
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police in the Community
• On Feb. 17, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers attended a POW/MIA dedication ceremony at the Cabela’s store in Newark.
• On Feb. 19, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers presented information on what to expect when checked by an officer in the field to students attending a Basic Hunter Education Course at Ommelanden Hunter Education and Training Center.
• On Feb. 19, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers presented information on obtaining wildlife rehabilitator permits, endangered and threatened species and Natural Resources Police’s role in wildlife rehabilitation at the Delaware Council of Wildlife Rehabilitators & Educators basic training at the Department of Agriculture in Dover.
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Actions
Incidents of note:
• On Feb. 13, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested Ian R. Collision, 34, of Bear, for one count each of theft under $1500 and conspiracy 3rd degree to aid other in misdemeanor. The arrest was made following an investigation into the theft of copper pipes and tools from a state-owned house that was under renovation in Kent County. Collision was arraigned at Kent County Justice of the Peace Court 7 and released on $600 unsecured bond and ordered to appear at the Court of Common Please at a later date.
• On Feb. 19, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested Christopher Huhn, 23, of Bear, for one count each of failure to attach deer tag to an antlered deer, failure to check antlered deer within 24 hours, failure to retain tag on antlered deer and unlawful to remove antlered deer parts prior to examining by the division. The arrest was made following an investigation into deer hunting violations that occurred near Milford. Huhn was arraigned at Kent County Justice of the Peace Court 7 and released with an order to appear in the Court of Common Please at a later date.
Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:
Wildlife Conservation: Failure to attach deer tag to an antlered deer (1), failure to check antlered deer within 24 hours (1), failure to retain tag on antlered deer (1), and unlawful to remove antlered deer parts prior to examining by division (1).
Boating Safety: Operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets (1), obstructing use of a public boat ramp (2), and no tidal boat ramp certificate (1).
Public Safety: Theft under $1500 (1), and conspiracy 3rd degree to aid other in misdemeanor (1).
Are you AWARE?
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind visitors to state wildlife areas, fishing piers and boat launching facilities that these areas are closed to the public from sunset to sunrise unless a person is actively and lawfully engaged in fishing, hunting or boating in accordance with state regulations and individual wildlife area rules. Individuals not meeting these requirements who are found in these areas between sunset and sunrise face fines up to $100 for trespassing after hours.
Wildlife area visitors also are reminded that it is illegal to operate motor vehicles – including motorcycles, cars, trucks and SUVs – off established roadways in state wildlife areas. Violators found to have caused damage also will be cited for destruction of state property. In addition, operating a motor vehicle that is not licensed for use on established public roadways – including ATVs – is prohibited both on- and off-road on state wildlife areas.
“With changing temperatures, the ground is especially vulnerable to damage from vehicles operating off-road,” said Sgt. John McDerby of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police. “Doing ‘donuts’ or four-wheeling in wildlife areas is irresponsible and illegal behavior that damages essential wildlife habitat, as well as generating unnecessary work and expense to repair the damage.”
Other noteworthy general rules and regulations to remember include:
• Camping, swimming, fires, target shooting (including paintball) and dumping or littering are prohibited in state wildlife areas.
• Dog training is permitted only within established dog training areas or during open hunting seasons for the game animals that the dog is being trained to hunt.
• Hunting is permitted only in specified areas and only during designated hunting seasons.
• Firearms are prohibited on state wildlife areas from March 1 to Aug. 31, except during legal hunting seasons or as authorized by the Division of Fish & Wildlife.
• All state wildlife areas are designated carry-in, carry-out for trash.
For more information on individual wildlife areas, including the rules and regulations specific to each wildlife area, wildlife area visitors are encouraged to check out Delaware wildlife area maps. These maps are available in hard copy at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk in the Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and online at Delaware Wildlife Area Maps.
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife recognizes and thanks the majority of anglers, hunters and boaters who comply with and support Delaware’s fishing, hunting and boating laws and regulations. Citizens are encouraged to report fish, wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030 or online at http://de.gov/ogt.
Media contact: Sgt. John McDerby, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913 or 302-354-1386.
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