Delaware Hunting Seasons to Open in October Include Antlerless Deer, Muzzleloader Deer, Duck and Snow Goose

A Northern pintail drake, a duck also known to wildlife watchers and hunters as a “bull sprig” for its graceful and powerful flight. Delaware’s first season split for duck hunting runs from Oct. 21 to 29. /USFWS photo

 

Youth Waterfowl Hunt to Occur Oct. 15; Hunters Reminded That Deer Hunting is Allowed on All Sundays Through Jan. 31, 2023

Additional Delaware hunting seasons are set to open in October, including various deer firearm seasons, duck, snow goose and other migratory game birds – as well as the one-day youth-only waterfowl hunt on Saturday, Oct. 15, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control announced today. Deer hunting is allowed on all Sundays through Jan. 31, 2023, using only those hunting methods legal for the respective established deer hunting seasons, with additional information available at de.gov/sundayhunt.

Hunting season dates and hunting hours for seasons opening in October:

  • Snow goose: Oct. 1 through Jan. 31, 2023; Feb. 4, 2023 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Antlerless deer: Oct. 1 through 2, 17, 21 through 24 and 28 through 31, including Sundays (½- hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset)
  • Muzzleloader deer: Oct. 7 through 16, including Sundays (½- hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset)
  • Youth Waterfowl Hunt: Oct. 15 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Ducks, coots and mergansers: first season split Oct. 21 through Oct. 29 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)

Continuing hunting seasons include:

  • Mourning dove: through Oct. 3 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Moorhen, gallinule, sora, Virginia rail, king rail and clapper rail: through Nov. 23 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Common snipe: through Nov. 26 (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Archery and crossbow deer: through Jan. 31, 2023, including all Sundays (½- hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset
  • Gray squirrel: through Feb. 4, 2023 (½-hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset; closed during the November deer general firearm season)
  • Coyote: through Feb. 28, 2023 (½- hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset)
  • Crows: through March 25, 2023, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only (½-hour before sunrise to sunset)
  • Groundhog: through June 30, 2023 (½- hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset)

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife offers many hunting opportunities on state wildlife areas. Wildlife area maps and rules are available at de.gov/wamaps, with information specific to Sunday deer hunting on state wildlife areas available at de.gov/sundayhunt.

A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number (LEN) is required to hunt, and most waterfowl hunters are required to purchase a Delaware waterfowl (duck) stamp and a Federal Duck Stamp. Dove, goose and duck hunters also need a Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number, which can be obtained online at de.gov/digitaldnrec or by calling toll free 1-855-DEL-HUNT (1-855-335-4868). When using the online DNREC permitting system, hunters should either create a profile or use the “Quick Hunting Registration” option.

Registered motor vehicles used to access designated wildlife areas owned or managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife are required to have and display a Conservation Access Pass (CAP). Hunters can opt to receive one free annual CAP with the purchase of any Delaware hunting license. To obtain a CAP, hunters will need the registration card for the vehicle to which the pass will be assigned.

Delaware hunting licenses, Delaware waterfowl stamps and Conservation Access Passes can be purchased online at de.gov/digitaldnrec, at the license desk in DNREC’s Dover office at 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901 or from hunting license agents statewide. Hunters obtaining a LEN are reminded that they should create a profile using the de.gov/digitaldnrec portal or obtain a LEN at a hunting license agent if they have not already done so. Federal Duck Stamps are available for purchase at U.S. Post Offices, Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges and online at 2022/2023 Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp.

More information on hunting seasons and wildlife areas is available in the 2022/2023 Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide at de.gov/hunting. More information on hunting licenses, the state waterfowl stamp and the Conservation Access Pass is available at de.gov/huntinglicense.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 68,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov; Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov

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Hunters Reminded of Basic Hunter Education Course Requirements

A Delaware hunter education instructor helps a young Delaware hunter with the field day live-fire requirement for participants in the state’s basic hunter education course. /DNREC photo

 

Online and In-person Courses Available

With the start of early 2022/23 hunting seasons approaching, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control reminds hunters born after Jan. 1, 1967 that they must successfully complete an approved Basic Hunter Education Course to obtain a Delaware hunting license. Early pre-registration is advised due to limited class seating, with classes filling quickly as the hunting season approaches for a number of game species, including deer, ducks, geese and doves.

Course dates, times and locations are available online at the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Hunter Education Program’s course calendar. Additional classes will be scheduled based on class demand. Classes are generally offered from July through February. Students must be 10 years of age or older to take any Delaware Hunter Education Program course.

The Basic Hunter Education Course teaches students safety, ethics, firearm types, safe gun handling, marksmanship techniques, specialty hunting techniques, wildlife management, wildlife identification, survival, Delaware hunting laws and regulations and many other hunter safety-related topics. All Basic Hunter Education Course participants must participate in a live firearm firing session with a trained instructor.

There are two options for taking the Basic Hunter Education Course:

  • Traditional, in-person course offered at one of the classroom locations throughout the state. The in-person course is free of charge to all students.
  • Online hunter education course with one of three private vendors listed at de.gov/huntersafety combined with a one-day in-person field day course to complete the live firearm firing requirement. A fee is charged for taking the course online; the field day course is free.

Registration for the Basic Hunter Education Courses can be made by visiting de.gov/licensing.

The Delaware Hunter Education Program was established in the early 1970s to help educate the public in safe hunting practices and to reduce hunting-related accidents. Since 1967, more than 39,000 Delaware hunters have completed hunter safety courses and received their hunter safety cards, which has substantially reduced hunting-related accidents.

For more information, contact the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Hunter Education Office at 302-735-3600, ext. 1.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 68,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov; Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov

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Many Hunting Opportunities Available as 2021/22 Hunting Season Nears End

The Snow Goose Conservation Order aims to help reduce the large snow goose population that is damaging the species’ Arctic nesting grounds, as well as wetlands and agricultural lands on their migration routes and overwintering areas. USFWS photo.

 

Youth Waterfowl Hunting Day and Snow Goose Conservation Order to Open; Other Seasons Continue

A wide variety of hunting opportunities are available in February, including the opening of the Snow Goose Conservation Order that begins Tuesday, Feb. 1 and the second special youth waterfowl hunting day on Saturday, Feb. 5, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control announced today.

Youth Waterfowl Hunting Day: The one-day, special youth waterfowl hunting day is open for hunters ages 10 through 15. Normal daily waterfowl bag limits and hunting regulations apply during the special youth waterfowl hunting day, including a limit of 25 snow geese and one Canada goose. For more information on the youth waterfowl hunt, visit the DNREC website.

Youth waterfowl hunting is available on many state wildlife areas, some of which are

accessed through a waterfowl blind lottery drawing. The following wildlife areas issue waterfowl blinds through a lottery drawing: Augustine, Cedar Swamp, Woodland Beach and Assawoman wildlife areas, where a morning lottery is held one and a half hours before legal shooting time; and the Little Creek and Ted Harvey wildlife areas, where a morning lottery is held two hours before legal shooting time. A State Wildlife Area Waterfowl Blind Permit is not required during the Youth Waterfowl Hunting Day.

Snow Goose Conservation Order: The Snow Goose Conservation Order is open Tuesday, Feb. 1 through Friday, Feb. 4, closing on Saturday, Feb. 5 for the youth waterfowl hunting day and the one-day reopening of the regular snow goose season. The Snow Goose Conservation Order reopens Monday, Feb. 7 and runs through Friday, April 8.

The Snow Goose Conservation Order is a separate season open only for snow geese that occurs when Delaware’s regular waterfowl hunting seasons are closed. During the Snow Goose Conservation Order, liberal harvest methods are permitted to help reduce the large snow goose population that is damaging the species’ Arctic nesting grounds, as well as wetlands and agricultural lands on their migration routes and overwintering areas. For more information, visit the DNREC website.

Continuing hunting seasons in February include:

  • Gray squirrel: through Feb. 5, 2022
  • Ring-necked pheasant (male only): through Feb. 5, 2022
  • Cottontail rabbit: through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Coyote (hunt): through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Red fox (hunt): through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Raccoon and opossum (hunt): through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Beaver: through March 19, 2022, private land only
  • Crows: through March 26, 2022, June 23 through 25, 2022 and June 30, 2022 (Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only)
  • Groundhog: through June 30, 2022

Continuing trapping seasons include:

  • Muskrat, mink, otter, raccoon, opossum, and nutria:
    • New Castle County: through March 10, 2022 (March 20 on embanked meadows)
    • Kent and Sussex counties: through March 15, 2022
  • Red fox and coyote: through March 10, 2022
  • Beaver: through March 20, 2022, private land only
  • Red fox and coyote: through March 10, 2022
  • Beaver: through March 20, 2022, private land only

More information about hunting regulations as apply to state wildlife areas and public hunting areas can be found at de.gov/wamaps.

A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number (LEN) is required to hunt, and most waterfowl hunters are required to purchase a Delaware waterfowl (duck) stamp and a Federal Duck Stamp. Migratory bird hunters, except crow hunters, also need a Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number, which can be obtained through DNREC’s ePermitting system, or by calling toll free 1-855-DEL-HUNT (1-855-335-4868). If using the DNREC ePermitting system, hunters should either create a profile or use the “Quick Hunting Registration” option.

Registered motor vehicles used to access designated wildlife areas owned or managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife are required to display a Conservation Access Pass (CAP). Hunters can opt to receive one free annual CAP with the purchase of any Delaware hunting license. To obtain a CAP, hunters will need the registration card for the vehicle to which the pass will be assigned.

Delaware hunting licenses, Delaware waterfowl stamps and Conservation Access Passes can be purchased online at de.gov/huntinglicense or from hunting license agents statewide. Hunters obtaining a LEN are reminded that they should create a profile using the DNREC ePermitting system portal or obtain a LEN at a hunting license agent if they have not already done so. Federal Duck Stamps are available for purchase at U.S. Post Offices, Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges and online at 2021/2022 Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp webpage.

Additional information on hunting seasons and state wildlife areas is available in the 2021/2022 Delaware Hunting & Trapping Guide or by calling the Wildlife Section at 302-739-9912. Information on hunting licenses, the state waterfowl stamp and the Conservation Access Pass is available at de.gov/huntinglicense or by calling the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Recreational Licensing office at 302-739-9918.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 68,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov; Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov


Additional Delaware Hunting, Trapping Seasons To Open in December

Waterfowl hunters await as ducks are called into their decoy spread. US Fish and Wildlife Service photo

 

Waterfowl and Antlerless Deer Hunting Seasons, Numerous Trapping Seasons Included

Delaware waterfowl hunters are gearing up for the state’s third duck hunting season segment, which runs from Friday, Dec. 10 through Monday, Jan. 31, 2022, and the second Canada goose hunting season segment, which runs from Friday, Dec. 24 through Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control announced today. Additional hunting seasons to include the special antlerless deer season open in December, as well as the opening of numerous trapping seasons.

Deer hunters are encouraged to harvest does (female deer) to help manage the size and quality of Delaware’s deer population. Deer hunting is allowed on all Sundays through January 2022, using only those hunting methods legal for the respective established deer hunting seasons. Additional information is available at de.gov/sundayhunt.

Hunting season dates opening in December:

  • Beaver: Dec. 1 through Mar. 19, 2022, Private Land Only
  • Woodcock and common snipe: Dec. 3 through Jan. 17, 2022
  • Antlerless deer: Dec. 11 through 19, including Sundays Dec. 12 and 19*
  • Ducks, coots and mergansers: Dec. 10 through Jan. 31, 2022
  • Brant: Dec. 11 through Jan. 31, 2022
  • Canada goose (Migratory season): Dec. 24 through Jan. 22, 2022

*Archery and crossbow hunters may hunt deer during the December antlerless season but may NOT harvest antlered deer.

Trapping season dates opening** in December:

  • Muskrat, mink, otter, raccoon, opossum, nutria:
    ○ New Castle County: Dec. 1 through Mar. 10, 2022 (March 20 on embanked meadows)
    ○ Kent and Sussex counties: Dec. 15 through Mar. 15, 2022
  • Red fox and coyote: Dec. 1 through Mar. 10, 2022
  • Beaver: Dec. 1 through Mar. 20, 2022, Private Land Only

**Groundhog trapping season continues through June 30, 2022

Continuing hunting seasons include:

  • Bobwhite quail: through Jan. 1, 2022
  • Mourning dove: through Jan. 31, 2022
  • Archery and crossbow deer: through Jan. 31, 2022, including all Sundays
  • Sea ducks in Special Sea Duck Area: through Jan. 31, 2022
  • Tundra swan (by special permit ONLY): through Jan. 31, 2022
  • Snow goose: through Jan. 31, 2022 and Feb. 5, 2022
  • Ring-necked pheasant (male only): through Feb. 5, 2022
  • Gray squirrel: through Feb. 5, 2022
  • Cottontail rabbit: through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Coyote (hunting): through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Red fox (hunting): through Feb. 28, 2022
  • Raccoon and opossum (hunting): through Feb. 28, 2022***
  • Crows: through March 26, 2022, June 23 through 25, 2022 and June 30, 2022 (Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only)
  • Groundhog: through June 30, 2022

***Special raccoon and opossum hunting hours during the December antlerless, January handgun, January shotgun and January muzzleloader deer seasons are 7:00 p.m. until midnight (reference the hunting and trapping guide for these deer season dates).

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife offers many hunting opportunities on state wildlife areas, with details available at de.gov/wamaps. Information specific to Sunday deer hunting on state wildlife areas is available at de.gov/sundayhunt.

A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number (LEN) is required to hunt, and most waterfowl hunters are required to purchase a Delaware waterfowl (duck) stamp and a Federal Duck Stamp. Migratory bird hunters, except crow hunters, also need a Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number, which can be obtained through the DNREC ePermitting system website or by calling toll free 855-DEL-HUNT (855-335-4868). If using the DNREC ePermitting system, hunters should either create a profile or use the “Quick Hunting Registration” option.

Registered motor vehicles used to access designated wildlife areas owned or managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife are required to display a Conservation Access Pass (CAP). Hunters can opt to receive one free annual CAP with the purchase of any Delaware hunting license. To obtain a CAP, hunters will need the registration card for the vehicle to which the pass will be assigned.

Delaware hunting licenses, Delaware waterfowl stamps and Conservation Access Passes can be purchased online at de.gov/huntinglicense or from hunting license agents statewide. Hunters obtaining a LEN are reminded that they should create a profile using the DNREC ePermitting system portal or obtain a LEN at a hunting license agent if they have not already done so. Federal Duck Stamps are available for purchase at U.S. Post Offices, Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges and online at 2021/2022 Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp.

Additional information on hunting seasons and state wildlife areas is available in the 2021/2022 Delaware Hunting & Trapping Guide or by calling the Wildlife Section at 302-739-9912. Information on hunting licenses, the state waterfowl stamp and the Conservation Access Pass is available at de.gov/huntinglicense or by calling the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Recreational Licensing office at 302-739-9918.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 68,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov, or Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov

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Hunters Reminded of Basic Hunter Education Course Requirements

Online and In-Person Courses Available

With fall hunting seasons approaching, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control reminds hunters born after Jan. 1, 1967, that they must successfully complete an approved Basic Hunter Education Course to obtain a Delaware Hunting License. Early pre-registration is advised due to limited class seating, with classes filling quickly as the hunting season approaches.

Course dates, times and locations are available online on the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Hunter Education Program’s Hunter Education Course Calendar. Additional classes will be scheduled based on class demand. Classes are generally offered from July through February. Students must be 10 years of age or older to be able to take any Hunter Education Program Course.

The Basic Hunter Education Course teaches students safety, ethics, firearm types, safe gun handling, marksmanship techniques, specialty hunting techniques, wildlife management, wildlife identification, survival, Delaware hunting laws and regulations and many other hunter safety-related topics. All Basic Hunter Education Course participants must participate in a live firearm firing session with a trained instructor.

Two options are available for the Basic Hunter Education Course:

  • Traditional, in-person course offered at one of the classroom locations throughout the state, which includes the required live firearm firing session. The in-person course is free of charge to all students.
  • Online hunter education course with one of three private vendors listed on the Hunter Education web page at de.gov/huntersafety, combined with a one-day, in-person field day course to complete the live firearm firing requirement. A fee is charged for taking the course online; the field day course is free.

Registration for Basic Hunter Education Courses is available online through the ePermitting system at de.gov/digitaldnrec.

The Delaware Hunter Education Program was established in the early 1970s to help educate the public in safe hunting practices and to reduce hunting-related accidents. More than 37,000 Delaware hunters have completed hunter safety courses and received their hunter safety cards, which has substantially reduced hunting-related accidents.

For more information, contact the Division of Fish and Wildlife Hunter Education Office at 302-735-3600, ext. 1.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 65,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov; Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov

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