Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: July 2-8

Reminder for the week: Entering after hours on state wildlife areas continues to be an issue

DOVER – To achieve public compliance with laws and regulations through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between July 2-8 made 3,940 contacts with anglers, boaters, and the general public, issuing 83 citations. Officers responded to 129 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 Michael N. Castle Trail.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Action

Incident of note:

  • On July 3, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers cited an individual for failure to maintain a proper lookout following an investigation into a boat accident where a vessel with four people on board ran onto the rocks of the North side of the C&D Canal near the Reedy Point Bridge. All four victims, to include the operator were taken to Christiana Emergency Room where they were treated and released.

Prop Damage
Damaged prop on boat that ran onto rocks.

Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included: Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Unlicensed fishing (9), no F.I.N. (2), trespass to fish (1), possession of undersized blue crab (9), over-the-limit crab pots (1), possession of over-the-limit hard clams (1), possession of undersized black seabass (1), possession of undersized striped bass (1), and possession of flounder parts (1). Commercial: No commercial crabbing license (1).

Boating and Boating Safety: Failure to observe slow no wake (3), no tidal boat ramp certificate (1), no life jacket on a child age 12 or younger as required by law (6), operating an unregistered vessel (4), failure to maintain a proper lookout (1), negligent operation of a personal watercraft (2), allowing use of non-compliant vessel (2), operating a personal watercraft without a life jacket (4), no navigation lights (2), no sound-producing device (1), and no boating safety certificate (6).

Public Safety: Possession of marijuana – civil (1)* and possession of drug paraphernalia (2).

Other: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (19)*, littering (1), and operating an unregistered vehicle (golf cart) in a wildlife area (1).

*Includes citation(s) issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.

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

Are you AWARE?

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police are increasing patrols and closely monitoring state wildlife areas, fishing piers, public boat launching facilities and multi-use areas for visitor safety and compliance, as well as checking for illegal activity such as drug use, littering, and damaging wildlife habitat.

State wildlife areas, fishing piers and boat launching facilities 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 and found at these sites between sunset and sunrise face fines up to $100 for trespassing after hours.

Media Contact: Sgt. Brooke Africa, 302-382-7167, or Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913