Reminder for the week: Harvest of river herring, retaining striped bass during spawning season, use of nets near spillways unlawful in Delaware
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 March 13-19 made 1,067 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 14 vessel boardings for boating safety, hunting and fishing regulation compliance checks, issuing 10 citations. Officers responded to 20 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 Actions
Incident of note:
• On March 17, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources officers arrested William S. Adkins, 42, of Laurel following an investigation for two counts of possession of a deadly weapon by a person prohibited and three counts of possess or transport unlawfully taken antlerless deer near Laurel. Adkins was arraigned at Sussex County Justice of the Peace Court 3 where he was released on $5,300 unsecured bond and ordered to appear in Sussex County Superior Court at a later date.
Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:
Wildlife: Possess or transport unlawfully taken antlerless deer (3).
Public Safety: Possession of a deadly weapon by a person prohibited (2).
Other: Operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway on a state wildlife area (2)*, Damaging state property on a wildlife area (2)*, and operating an unregistered motor vehicle on a state wildlife area (1).
*Includes citation(s) issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Are you AWARE?
With spring fishing season gearing up, DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police reminds recreational anglers that it is unlawful in Delaware to harvest and use river herring for bait. Signs giving notice of the fishery closure are posted at fishing spots known to hold river herring. Fines for illegal possession of river herring begin at $50 for a first offense, and increase to $100-$500 for a second offense. For more information, click river herring regulation.
Anglers are also reminded that during Delaware’s striped bass spawning season, which begins April 1 and continues through midnight on May 31, it is unlawful for any person to take and retain any striped bass from the Nanticoke River or its tributaries, the Delaware River and its tributaries to the north of a line extending due east beginning at and including the south jetty at the mouth of the C&D Canal, or the C&D Canal or its tributaries. Anglers are required to practice catch and release fishing during this season with no harvest allowed in these areas.
In addition, regulations require anglers fishing with natural bait on any striped bass spawning ground during the closed spawning season to use a non-offset circle hook. The Division of Fish & Wildlife recommends that circle hooks always be used when fishing natural baits because of their proven ability to reduce hook-and-release mortality for striped bass and other fish species. The circle hook’s design usually results in fish being hooked in the mouth, simplifying hook removal and reducing injury to the released fish.
As fish begin entering the spillways this spring, anglers are reminded that using any type of net to catch fish in tidal water within 300 feet below a dam or spillway is illegal, with the exception of using a landing net on a fish caught with hook and line.
Most anglers are required to have a Delaware fishing license. Licenses are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and by license agents statewide. To find a participating agent, or to purchase a license online, visit Delaware Licenses. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.
For more information on fishing in Delaware, click on 2017 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk, and from license agents throughout the state.
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.
Like Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, www.facebook.com/pages/Delaware-Fish-Wildlife-Natural-Resources-Police.
Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Twitter, https://twitter.com/DE_FW_NRPolice.
Media contact: Sgt. John McDerby, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913 or 302-354-1386.
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