DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police now accepting applications for summer Youth Academies

DOVER – If you are a student aged 12 to 15 with an interest in natural resources and law enforcement, DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police are once again offering their popular and successful summer Youth Academies, now in their fourth year.

The Youth Academy is a five-day program designed to teach youth about boating safety, hunter safety, and how to protect our natural resources, while looking to nurture the relationship between DNREC Natural Resources Police officers and the community. Participants in the Youth Academy attend tuition-free.

Since the program’s inception in 2016, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police have held seven academies, serving 122 youth, all of whom received their boating safety and hunter safety certifications. In 2018, a total of 44 students graduated from the academies.

This year’s offerings include two Basic Youth Academies and one Advanced Youth Academy:

  • Natural Resources Police Basic Youth Academy (Kent County) –
    Monday through Friday, July 8-12, Little Creek Hunter Education Training Center, 3018 Bayside Drive, Dover, DE 19901
    Application Deadline: Friday, June 7
  • Natural Resources Police Basic Youth Academy (New Castle County) –
    Monday through Friday, July 15-19, Ommelanden Hunter Education Training Center, 1205 River Road, New Castle, DE 19720
    Application Deadline: Friday, June 7
  • Natural Resources Police Advanced Youth Academy (New Castle County) –
    Tuesday through Saturday, July 23-27, Ommelanden Hunter Education Training Center, 1205 River Road, New Castle, DE 19720
    Application Deadline: Friday, June 7

The Basic Youth Academies are each limited to the first 20 qualified applicants, with priority given to those who have not already completed a hunter safety course or boating safety course when the academy begins. Applications must include a 250-word essay on why the applicant wants to take part in the academy and what Delaware’s natural resources mean to them. Students who complete the program will receive both their hunter and boating safety certifications.

The Advanced Youth Academy is for those who wish to continue learning what it is like to be a Natural Resources Police officer, as well as to learn additional outdoor skills. The Advanced Youth Academy is open to youth ages 12 to 15 years old who have either completed the Basic Youth Academy or have already earned their hunter safety and boating safety certifications. An overnight camping excursion is included and parent/guardian participation is mandatory for this portion.

The Advanced Youth Academy is limited to the first 15 qualified applicants, with priority given to those who have already completed the Basic Youth Academy. Applications must include a 500-word essay on either what the applicant learned from the Basic Youth Academy or, if they did not attend, what the applicant learned when they took their hunter and boating safety courses.

Applications are available online at http://de.gov/fwenforcement and at DNREC’s licensing desk in the Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

Opportunities to support the Youth Academies are available. Without the generous support and donations from the business community, private organizations, and individuals, the youth academies would not be successful.

For more information regarding the Youth Academy, please contact Captain Brian Pollock at 302-365-8703, or email brian.pollock@delaware.gov.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DEFWNRPolice/.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Twitter, https://twitter.com/DE_FW_NRPolice.

Contact: Sgt. Brooke Mitchell, DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-382-7167, or 302-739-9913, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 75


DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: March 18-24

Reminder for the week: Time to purchase your 2019 Delaware fishing license

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’s Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between March 18-24 made 1,037 contacts with hunters, anglers, boaters, and the general public, issuing 48 citations. Officers responded to 34 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. A Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and Michael N. Castle Trail.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Actions

Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:

Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Unlicensed fishing (5), use of net in prohibited area within 300 feet of spillway (1), possession of river herring during closure (20), possession of undersize striped bass (1), snagging of game fish (2), and illegal method of take – shad (2).
Commercial: Illegal gill net marking (3) and no reflector marking on gill net (1).

Public Safety: Loaded firearm in a vehicle (1).

Other: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (8)*, damage state property (1), dumping solid waste (1), driving off established roadway in state wildlife area (1)*, and unregistered motor vehicle (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 or through the DENRP Tip app on a smartphone, which can be downloaded free of charge by searching “DENRP Tip” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030, going online to http://de.gov/ogt, or using the DENRP Tip app. Verizon customers can connect to Operation Game Theft directly by dialing #OGT.

Are you AWARE?
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind anglers to purchase their 2019 Delaware fishing licenses. A valid fishing license is required for fishing, crabbing, and clamming in Delaware in both tidal and non-tidal waters.

A resident annual fishing license costs $8.50 for ages 16 through 64. Anglers under the age of 16 and residents age 65 and older are not required to purchase fishing licenses in Delaware. Some requirements differ for non-resident anglers. Exempt persons may purchase fishing licenses if they so choose to help support fisheries management in Delaware.

Recreational anglers 16 years and older fishing Delaware waters also are required to obtain a Delaware Fisherman Information Network (FIN) number, which is generated automatically on all individual fishing licenses sold through Delaware’s electronic licensing system. License-exempt anglers, including Delaware residents 65 and older, non-resident boat fishing license holders who do not have an individual license, and individuals who do not have an individual license fishing on boats covered by a boat fishing license must obtain their free FIN number by visiting www.delaware-fin.com or calling 800-432-9228 toll-free.

Delaware fishing 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 2019 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk and from license agents throughout the state.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DEFWNRPolice/.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Twitter, https://twitter.com/DE_FW_NRPolice.

Contact: Lt. John McDerby, 302-354-1386, or Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913


DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: March 11-17

Reminder for the week: Harvest of river herring, retaining striped bass in spawning areas, use of nets near spillways unlawful in Delaware

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’s Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between March 11-17 made 1,200 contacts with hunters, anglers, boaters, and the general public, issuing 10 citations. Officers responded to 31 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. A Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and Michael N. Castle Trail.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police in the Community

  • On March 14, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers interacted with approximately 90 children ages 11-13 during the DNREC Junior Achievement Career Fair in Wilmington.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Actions

Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:

Fisheries Conservation: No Fisherman Information Network (FIN) number (1), and unlicensed fishing (1).

Public Safety: Loitering – engage or solicit another to engage in sex (4).

Boating Safety: Operate a vessel with insufficient life jackets (1).

Other: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (1)*, damage state property (1)*, and area map violation – dog off of leash on Michael Castle Trail (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 or through the DENRP Tip app on a smartphone, which can be downloaded free of charge by searching “DENRP Tip” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030, going online to http://de.gov/ogt, or using the DENRP Tip app. Verizon customers can connect to Operation Game Theft directly by dialing #OGT.

Are you AWARE?
With spring fishing season ready to gear up, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind recreational anglers that it is unlawful in Delaware to harvest river herring. 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 on river herring.

During spawning season for striped bass in Delaware, 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. All striped bass caught in these areas during spawning season must be released, with no harvest allowed. Anglers fishing these areas during the spawning season with natural bait must use a non-offset circle hook with a hook gap of greater than 3/8 inches.

Anglers are also 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.

For more information on fishing in Delaware, click on 2019 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk, and from license agents throughout the state.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DEFWNRPolice/.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Twitter, https://twitter.com/DE_FW_NRPolice.

Contact: Lt. John McDerby, 302-354-1386, or Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913


Delaware Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish to meet March 26 in Dover

DOVER – Delaware’s Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 26, in the DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

The Council will review and make final recommendations on proposed 2019/2020 waterfowl and migratory game bird seasons, as well as discuss current regulations related to gunning rigs (hunting waterfowl from boats). For more information, including the meeting agenda, visit the Delaware Public Meeting Calendar at https://publicmeetings.delaware.gov/Meeting/62200.

For more information on Delaware wildlife, please call the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Wildlife Section at 302-739-9912. For more information on Delaware fisheries, please call the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Fisheries Section at 302-739-9914.

Follow the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 64


DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: March 4-10

Reminder for the week: Boaters urged to check gear before putting vessels in the water

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’s Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between March 4-10 made 1,082 contacts with hunters, anglers, boaters, and the general public, issuing 14 citations. Officers responded to 36 complaints regarding possible violations of laws and regulations or requests to assist the public. A Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence continued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and Michael N. Castle Trail.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police in the Community

  • Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers, along with other Division of Fish & Wildlife staff, will be attending the Ducks Unlimited Greenwing Conservation Festival on April 13 at Fish & Wildlife’s Owens Station complex near Greenwood, where we will be featuring the following displays and activities: Operation Game Theft trailer, a marine patrol vessel, hunter education, live archery trailer, Take a Kid Fishing casting activities, annual statewide youth Sport Fishing Tournament, and waterfowl and trout stamp displays, as well as K9 and waterfowl banding demonstrations. For more information, click Greenwing Conservation Festival.

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Actions

Citations issued by category, with the number of charges in parentheses, included:

Wildlife Conservation: Failure to register antlerless deer within 24 hours (1) and remove antlerless deer parts prior to registering (1).

Public Safety: Possession of drug paraphernalia (3)*.

Boating Safety: Operate a vessel with insufficient life jackets (1).

Other: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (7)* and operating a vehicle off an established roadway in 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 or through the DENRP Tip app on a smartphone, which can be downloaded free of charge by searching “DENRP Tip” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030, going online to http://de.gov/ogt, or using the DENRP Tip app. Verizon customers can connect to Operation Game Theft directly by dialing #OGT.

Are you AWARE?

Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind boaters that in addition to taking a boater safety course, making sure your vessel is water-ready increases your safety levels. Before putting your vessel in the water, you should perform a pre-departure check by ensuring that you have:

  • All current required licenses and registrations, including fishing license(s), boat registration, boating safety certificate, and, for vessels registered out-of-state launching at a Division of Fish & Wildlife tidal boat ramp, a boat ramp certificate;
  • Enough lifejackets for everyone on board, including for children age 12 or younger who are required by Delaware law to wear them when the vessel is underway and when not in an enclosed cabin, though lifejacket use is encouraged at all times when aboard a vessel; for vessels 16 feet or more in length, a throwable life preserver is also required;
  • Checked the local weather forecast;
  • Left a float plan with a responsible friend, family member, or local marina, including a description of your boat, when you plan to head out, who is going with you, where you plan to go, and when you plan to return;
  • Checked for working navigation lights, steering, and throttle controls;
  • Checked oil, fuel, and fluid levels;
  • Checked for fuel leaks, including hose clamps and connections;
  • Drained all water from the engine compartment or bilge, and replaced and secured the bilge plug;
  • A fully-charged engine battery and fire extinguishers;
  • Emergency flares and a fully charged cell phone or marine radio; and
  • Plenty of water to stay hydrated and sunscreen to protect against sunburn, which can be severe on the water.

For more information, including Delaware’s boating safety course schedule, access to the online Delaware Boating Handbook, and other boating information, please visit Delaware Boating Safety or contact Lt. John McDerby, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, at 302-365-8705 or email john.mcderby@delaware.gov.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DEFWNRPolice/.

Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Twitter, https://twitter.com/DE_FW_NRPolice.

Contact: Lt. John McDerby, 302-354-1386, or Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913