Delaware Natural Resources Police Youth Fishing Tournament Winners Announced

Statewide Youth Fishing Tournament winner Onna Crowley, center, with OFC Callie Crouse, left, and Sr. Cpl. Adam Rourk, right, caught 18.8 pounds of fish from Lums Pond.

 

Tournament Marks 36th Year of Introducing Youth to Sport of Fishing

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control today announced the winners of the Delaware Natural Resources Police’s 36th annual Youth Fishing Tournament, held Saturday, June 4. After remotely-reported catch-and-release competitions the last two years due to the pandemic, the tournament returned with on-site tournament weighmasters at three locations across the state attended by more than 200 youth anglers: Ingrams Pond in Sussex County, Akridge Scout Reservation in Kent County, and Lums Pond in New Castle County.

Tournament participants ages 4 through 15 weighed their catches as they competed for the title of overall state winner along with trying to land each county’s top catch and age group titles. The overall winner and champion this year was Onna Crowley, age 13, of Clayton, who caught 18.80 pounds of fish at Lums Pond, including the biggest fish caught of the day, a 12.1-pound carp.

This year’s county winners and the overall statewide winner will be invited to a special trophy presentation on Governor’s Day at the 2022 Delaware State Fair in Harrington.

New Castle County Winners

Other New Castle County winners at Lums Pond, by age group and total weight of fish caught, were:

Ages 4 through 7:
First place – Myracle White, 2.29 pounds
Second place – Claire Baron, 2.23 pounds
Third place – Michael Hopkins, 0.93 pounds

Ages 8 through 11:
First place – Gabriel Alfaro, 12.14 pounds
Second place – Ace Ginevan, 3.32 pounds
Third place – Ava Ginevan, 1.36 pounds

Ages 12 through 15:
First place – Russell Reed, 7.92 pounds
Second place – Tyler Harvell, 2.82 pounds
Third place – Cody Wiseman, 2.55 pounds

Kent County Winners

At Akridge Scout Reservation, Dominic Webb was the day’s overall winner with a total of 5.25 pounds of fish. Other Kent County winners were:

Ages 4 through 7:
First place – Kohen Marvel, 2.60 pounds
Second place – Hunter Hickman, 2.09 pounds
Third place – Virginia Wallace, 2.00 pounds

Ages 8 through 11:
First place – Collin Meisinger, 4.45 pounds
Second place – Cole Smith, 2.56 pounds
Third place – Matthew DeCarlo, 2.02 pounds

Ages 12 through 15:
First place – Kirra Noble, 4.37 pounds
Second place – Evan Knutsen, 3.69 pounds
Third place – Gianna Velazquez, 3.11 pounds

Sussex County Winners

At Ingram’s Pond in Sussex County, Brody Spencer was the day’s overall winner with a total of 7.19 pounds of fish. Other Sussex County winners were:

Ages 4 through 7:
First place – Tristen Wertz, 3.17 pounds
Second place – Caden Timmons, 1.76 pounds
Third place – Lexi Briggs, 0.76 pounds

Ages 8 through 11:
First place – John Timmons, 2.29 pounds
Second place – Owen Laux, 1.91 pounds
Third place – Zachary Thompson, 1.59 pounds

Ages 12 through 15:
First place – Landon Elliot, 0.26 pounds

The Youth Fishing Tournament was established to introduce youth to the sport of fishing and to teach the catch-and-release approach to conservation. More information on the Youth Fishing Tournament can be found at de.gov/yft.

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 Contact: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov


DNREC, Division of Public Health Offer Tips About Ticks

An adult lone star tick in central Delaware. DNREC photo.

 

With spring heading into summer – prime time for ticks as well as for people getting outdoors – the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) has partnered with the Division of Public Health within the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) to educate the public about ticks, including where they are found, how to identify different types and what precautions to take before and after exposure to ticks, as well as information about tick-borne pathogens.

“Summer in Delaware is a great time to be outdoors enjoying Delaware’s state parks, wildlife areas, trails and waters,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “However, time-honored summer activities like hiking, biking, fishing and even beachgoing and gardening can expose outdoor enthusiasts to unwanted guests – ticks. The good news is residents and visitors can take steps such as using repellent, wearing light-colored clothes and checking for ticks after being outdoors to reduce or prevent the chances of getting tick bites.”

“We encourage Delawareans to get outside to enjoy fitness and family time,” said DHSS Secretary Molly Magarik. “But we also urge people to take the proper precautions to protect themselves and others because tick bites can cause serious illness. In Delaware, the most common tick-borne illness is Lyme disease. Symptoms can include a ‘bull’s-eye’ rash (seen in approximately half of Lyme disease cases in Delaware), fever, fatigue, headache, and muscle and joint aches. Chronic joint, heart, and neurological problems may occur. We urge anyone bitten by a tick to monitor their health closely, and contact a physician if symptoms develop.”

Precautions to avoid or reduce tick exposure include:

  • Keep grass short and remove brush from the yard to reduce tick habitat.

    Long pants tucked into socks can help prevent tick exposure. DNREC photo.
    Long pants tucked into socks can help prevent tick exposure. DNREC photo.
  • Wear long sleeves and long pants tucked into socks and use repellent to help keep ticks off in areas with high tick populations.
  • Choose light colored clothing to make ticks easier to see.
  • When returning from outdoor activities, check for ticks and remove any from skin with tweezers as soon as possible to reduce the chance of disease transmission.
  • Following exposure to tick-prone areas or tick bites, watch for symptoms of common illnesses caused by tick-borne pathogens and seek medical attention as needed.

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife and the DHSS Division of Public Health work together year-round to study tick populations, species distribution, seasonality and disease risk to humans, including Lyme disease. The goal of the tick program is to better understand the biology and ecology of Delaware ticks and the problems they cause, including how to best cope with those problems.

Dr. Ashley Kennedy, DNREC Tick Program entomologist. DNREC photo.
Dr. Ashley Kennedy, DNREC Tick Program entomologist. DNREC photo.

For DNREC Tick Program entomologist Dr. Ashley Kennedy, part of that work includes statewide tick surveys to collect and identify types of ticks.

“Tick surveys provide information about the numbers and species of ticks found in Delaware, as well as information about tick-borne diseases, since certain diseases are associated with certain tick species,” said Dr. Kennedy. “Knowing what species of tick has attached to you, a family member, or a pet will help determine whether you may be at risk for a tick-borne disease.”

To help Delaware residents and visitors exposed to ticks, DNREC has launched a new online tick interactions form that asks when and where the interaction took place, contact information and a photo of the tick if available to help identify its species.

Read more about Dr. Kennedy’s work in “Tick-Tock – the Ticks Are Waiting” in Outdoor Delaware online magazine.

Other tick facts include:

  • In Delaware, ticks are everywhere, but most bites occur in backyards.
  • Ticks do not jump or fall out of trees; they wait on grass or other plants for a host to walk by so they can grab on.
  • Ticks are active year-round, not just in late spring/early summer which is prime “tick season.”
  • Several different types of ticks are found in Delaware, and several types can carry different pathogens that can infect humans including Lyme disease.

More information about ticks can be found at de.gov/ticks and de.gov/lyme.

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: Joanna Wilson, joanna.wilson@delaware.gov; Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov


‘Take A Kid Fishing!’ Events Announced

(DNREC’s “Take A Kid Fishing!” program teaches young people ages 6 through 15 how to fish. /DNREC photo.)

Registration Now Open

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control invites budding anglers ages 6 through 15 to join the DNREC Division of Fish of Fish and Wildlife aquatic resource educators and learn how to fish with a parent, grandparent or guardian at an upcoming “Take a Kid Fishing!” event.

“Take a Kid Fishing!” events are offered free of charge to all participants, with advanced registration required. All fishing equipment is provided at no charge to participants for use at the events. To ensure that enough supplies are on hand, advanced registration is required at de.gov/takf.

Events will be held starting in June on the following dates at the following locations:

  • 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, June 4, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna
  • 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, June 11, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna
  • 9 a.m. to noon, Thursday, June 16, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna
  • 9 a.m. to noon, Friday, June 17, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna
  • 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, June 18, Lums Pond State Park, Bear
  • 9 a.m. to noon, Friday, June 24, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna
  • 9 a.m. to noon, Thursday, June 30, Aquatic Resources Education Center, Smyrna

Additional “Take A Kid Fishing!” event dates scheduled for July and August and program information is available at de.gov/takf.

“Take a Kid Fishing!” teaches young anglers fundamental fishing skills and conservation concepts, including catch-and-release. Along with the angling experience, these free fishing events also feature activity stations and prizes. Packing refreshments and a picnic lunch is encouraged.

Individuals 16 years of age and older who accompany and engage in fishing with “Take a Kid Fishing!” participants must have a current Delaware fishing license and a Delaware Fisherman Information Network (FIN) number. Delaware recreational fishing licenses are sold online and by license agents statewide. License-exempt anglers, including Delaware residents 65 and older, may obtain a free FIN number online or from a license agent where recreational fishing licenses are sold. Online services available at de.gov/fishinglicense include fishing license purchases, FIN numbers, a list of participating license agents, and additional related information. Children under the age of 16 are exempt from the license and FIN requirements.

Information on fishing in Delaware also can be found in the 2022 Delaware Fishing Guide at dnrec.delaware.gov. The guide is also available in printed form from license agents throughout the state.

“Take A Kid Fishing!” is sponsored by the DNREC Aquatic Resources Education Center, with host sites provided by the Division of Fish and Wildlife, DNREC’s Division of Parks and Recreation, Delaware Department of Agriculture Forest Service and City of Dover Parks and Recreation.

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; Joanna Wilson, joanna.wilson@delaware.gov


With Delaware Bay Beach Nourishment Projects Complete, DNREC Now Works Toward Restoring Atlantic Coastline

DNREC’s completed Bay beach nourishment project in Pickering Beach, showing a wide beach berm and newly planted beach grass. /DNREC photo

 

Recovery from the Recent Nor’easter to Continue Into Fall

Having recently completed beach nourishment projects in five Delaware Bay beach communities, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control today begins the next phase of restoring parts of Delaware’s coastline, including the beaches that experienced widespread erosion and damage from a May nor’easter.

“Our Shoreline team will be hard at it for the foreseeable future on beach restoration priorities that this storm handed us,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “While restoring the beaches will not be instant nor easy, we are confident of surmounting the challenge ahead. We’re working on making the state’s beaches accessible and in shape for the summer. Of course, we also welcome the communities’ help in restoring the beaches just as they – and we – value our federal partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers when expected beach nourishment projects begin in a number of these communities as early as next fall.”

“The damage done to our beaches by the recent nor’easter makes clear that robust federal, state and local partnerships are needed now more than ever,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper, chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “I have been fighting to give one of our key federal partners in this effort — the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers — several new beach restoration tools in the 2022 Water Resources Development Act legislation. Among the provisions in the bill are: emergency authority to allow the Corps to help restore beaches in the aftermath of storms; a requirement that the federal government pay 90% of the costs of the Bay Beach nourishment project; and a reorientation of the Corps’ civil works program to proactively address climate change and streamline the implementation of shoreline protection and restoration projects. The state of Delaware should be able to count on the support of the Corps and other federal agencies to help restore our beaches and make sure our communities are protected.”

DNREC recently completed beach nourishment project in the Pickering Beach, Kitts Hummock, Bowers, South Bowers, and Slaughter Beach communities. This project used approximately 52,650 cubic yards of sand – enough to fill almost 11 Olympic-sized swimming pools. The next restoration phase spans the majority of the state’s coastline and will require DNREC to partner with the Army Corps of Engineers and affected communities to restore the coastline.

Storm erosion and dune fence damage in Rehoboth Beach from the recent nor’easter storm. /DNREC photo
Storm erosion and dune fence damage in Rehoboth Beach from the recent nor’easter storm. /DNREC photo

“The long duration of the storm and the post-storm wind direction mean we may not see a rapid natural rebuilding of the beach,” said DNREC Shoreline and Waterway Section administrator Jesse Hayden. “The dunes did their job protecting our communities from being inundated, but by absorbing the impact of the storm they suffered damage that affects people’s ability to access the beach. Our immediate goal is restore as much safe beach access in as many communities as possible so that beachgoers can enjoy a safe and enjoyable Memorial Day weekend. Our partners are a big part of that.”

DNREC’s post-storm work is set to begin this week in South Bethany, the community worst hit by the storm, and restoration work will then move south to north. At each juncture, DNREC will clean up debris such as smashed dune fencing and will re-grade numerous access crossings. DNREC also is working on a nourishment project north of the Indian River Inlet which lost significant sand from the dune critical to protecting the roadway and the Indian River Inlet Bridge.

“The first pass made by our team will focus on cleanup and restoring access,” Hayden said. “When that work is done, we will begin repairing the damaged dune fence.” Both post and rope and wooden dune fence do the job of keeping people off the sensitive dune. But where wooden dune fence can trap wind-blown sand at its base, a post and rope system allows a more natural exchange where vegetation covering the dune can trap wind-blown sand over a wider area. DNREC uses both types, depending on the management needs in each area.

DNREC’s beach nourishment projects introduce sand into the shoreline system to offset the effects of erosion. The beach and dune are an important natural line of defense between the ocean or bay and inland public and private infrastructure, including houses and roads. Both the Delaware Bay and Atlantic beaches and dunes also provide crucial habitat for migrating shorebirds, including several threatened species, and other wildlife, such as spawning horseshoe crabs – which, under ordinary circumstances, means beach nourishment projects must be completed by April 15 or by March 1 at some beaches, with beach nourishment not permitted again until Oct. 1.

However, after Pickering Beach was impacted by a nor’easter on April 18, the Shoreline and Waterway Management Section requested and received approval from DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife to replace sand that had washed onto the road there back onto the beach. The sand was then reshaped into a dune at Pickering. The other Bay beach communities experienced some erosion of newly placed beach and dune sand, but none of the towns where the nourishment was made experienced overtopping of the dune from the most recent nor’easter.

Several bay beach communities experienced minor impacts from the more recent nor’easter that caused widespread erosion on the both coasts – some of the truck-hauled sand from that project was moved around and lost because of the storm. But the winter beach nourishment at South Bowers, Bowers, Kitts Hummock, Pickering Beach and Slaughter Beach largely held its ground and worked to protect the communities in the face of high tides and winds. Future nourishment is planned along both the Atlantic Ocean and Delaware Bay coastlines. Along the Atlantic Ocean, large scale nourishment projects in partnership with the Corps of Engineers will include Rehoboth Beach, Dewey Beach, Bethany Beach, South Bethany, and Fenwick Island. Along Delaware Bay, DNREC will perform small-scale nourishment to further fortify the most vulnerable sections of shoreline.

More information about the work of the DNREC Shoreline and Waterway Management Section can be found at de.gov/shoreline. More information on beach nourishment in Delaware available from Outdoor Delaware, de.gov/outdoordelaware.

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 Watershed Stewardship develops and implements innovative watershed assessment, monitoring and implementation activities. 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


Concord Pond to Be Treated for Invasive Aquatic Weed Hydrilla

The invasive aquatic weed hydrilla. Photo by David J. Moorhead-University of Georgia

 

With inland water temperatures rising and aquatic plants emerging, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will treat Concord Pond near Seaford beginning May 16 for the nuisance aquatic weed hydrilla. Signs will be posted at the Concord Pond boat ramp the day of treatment, and will remain in place for a month to advise the public and anglers of the treatment.

Hydrilla is a non-native, invasive plant that likely entered the state through the aquarium trade. Uncontrolled hydrilla can choke ponds and other waterways, crowding out beneficial plant species and preventing fishing and boating access.

Sonar, an aquatic herbicide containing fluridone, will be used to treat the pond for hydrilla. Sonar, registered with and approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has been used in Delaware since the 1980s and proven to be environmentally-compatible and effective for controlling hydrilla. Sonar does not pose a threat to wildlife, including fish, and there are no restrictions on fishing or consumption of fish after treatment.

The only restriction related to Sonar is that water from the treated pond should not be used for irrigation for 30 days after the date of treatment. Residents and farmers along the treated pond and directly downstream of it should not use the water to irrigate their gardens, yards or agricultural lands to avoid possible damage to their plantings. Landowners with permits to use water from the pond will be directly notified before treatment.

To prevent the spread of hydrilla and other invasive aquatic vegetation, anglers and boaters are encouraged to remove all hydrilla and other aquatic plants from their boats, trailers and gear before leaving the Concord Pond boat ramp.

For more information, contact the DNREC Fisheries Section at 302-739-9914.

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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