DNREC to conduct water-quality dye test in Murderkill River and Delaware Bay to evaluate bay oyster beds

DNREC LogoDOVER – The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Delaware Shellfish Program and Kent County Levy Court will conduct a week-long water quality study starting June 10 in the Murderkill River and Delaware Bay to evaluate the bay’s oyster beds. The study calls for applications of the red dye Rhodamine WT, which is commonly used in water quality and dispersion tests, and is not considered harmful to the public or the environment.

Weather permitting, application of the dye will be made at the Kent County Waste Water Treatment Plant near Frederica into a tributary of the Murderkill River to measure water flow and dispersion in waters where shellfish are harvested, according to DNREC’s Delaware Shellfish Program within the Division of Watershed Stewardship.

DNREC’s shellfish program utilizes a classification system that regulates the harvest of shellfish based on water quality, and which also assesses the potential risk to shellfish harvesting in the event of a wastewater spill. The goal of the red dye study is to help determine the potential impact to oyster beds in the possible event of a wastewater spill or other pollution event.

Dye applications are planned near late-evening low tide on Tuesday, June 11 and will continue until around noon the next day. As a result of the dye applications, portions of the Delaware Bay, Murderkill River and St. Jones River may turn reddish in color. The extent of water discoloration could be fairly widespread but should disperse within 48 hours.

The study – known as hydrographic dye dilution – will be conducted by DNREC in conjunction with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Kent County Department of Public Works. Results will help to appropriately classify shellfish harvesting waters, assess risk, and facilitate emergency closure provisions in the event of a wastewater spill associated with extreme weather or natural disasters, such as hurricanes, nor’easters, or heavy flooding. Information collected will be used by the FDA and DNREC to evaluate potential water quality impacts and closure of shellfish growing areas in the Delaware Bay under such emergency situations.

For more information on DNREC’s Delaware Shellfish Program, please visit de.gov/shellfish.

Media contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 145

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Delaware Shellfish Advisory Council to meet Nov. 7 in Dover

DOVER – Delaware’s Shellfish Advisory Council will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7 in the DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

The Council will discuss its reorganization and will receive updates on conch research and Inland Bays shellfish aquaculture. For more information, including the meeting agenda, visit the Delaware Public Meeting Calendar at https://publicmeetings.delaware.gov/Meeting/60693.

For more information on Delaware fisheries, please call DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife 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. 48, No. 300


DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrest commercial waterman for numerous shellfish and boating violations

DELAWARE CITY – Following an investigation into illegal activity on the Delaware River, DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested a commercial waterman from Sussex County on Sept. 20 for more than 600 shellfish and boating violations near Delaware City.

Shawn P. Moore, 40, of Georgetown, was charged with 322 counts of failure to tend commercial crab pots within 72 hours; 171 counts of improperly-marked commercial crab pot license number on buoy; 121 counts of over-the-limit commercial crab pots; two counts of crabbing from a vessel not displaying a proper color panel; and one count each of commercial crabbing under a crab pot number not assigned by DNREC; failure to have a commercial license in his possession; no fire extinguisher; no sound-producing device; and reckless operation of a vessel.

Moore was arraigned at Justice of the Peace Court 11 in New Castle, where he pleaded not guilty to all charges. He was released on his own recognizance pending a future appearance in the New Castle County Court of Common Pleas.

Citizens are encouraged to report fisheries violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 800-523-3336.

Media contact: Sgt. Brooke Mitchell, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9086 or 302-354-1386; or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902.

Vol. 48, No. 258


DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announces acreage availability for shellfish aquaculture

Inland Bays’ interactive shellfish aquaculture map to be updated May 10

The logo for the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental ControlDOVER – DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announced today that acreage will be made available for Inland Bays’ shellfish aquaculture lease starting later this month. Some acreage previously classified as “Pending” on the interactive Shellfish Aquaculture Development Area map will be updated starting May 10 to “Available.” This change comes after DNREC did not receive complete applications for these acres by a one-year deadline set by the Department that expired May 2.

DNREC will update the interactive shellfish aquaculture map – also accessible via the Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Inland Bays Shellfish Aquaculture webpage – to reflect the acres that have been returned to the catalog of acreage available for lease. For acres marked “available” on the updated interactive shellfish map, the Division of Fish & Wildlife will accept new lease applications on a first-come, first-served basis.

In order to apply for available acreage, applicants must submit a complete application and a $300 application fee to the Division of Fish & Wildlife. Visit the Inland Bays Shellfish Aquaculture webpage for the application and for additional information. Interested applicants can also contact Zina Hense at (302) 735-2960 for more details.

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

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

Vol. 48, No. 107

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Delaware Shellfish Advisory Council to meet Jan. 10 in Dover

DOVER – Delaware’s Shellfish Advisory Council will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, in the DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

The Council will discuss the oyster stock status and the 2018 oyster quota, the 2018 outlook for blue crab, and several other shellfish topics. For more information, including the meeting agenda, visit the Delaware Public Meeting Calendar at https://publicmeetings.delaware.gov/Meeting/55867.

For more information on Delaware fisheries, please call DNREC’s Fisheries Section at 302-739-9914.

Media contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902.

Vol. 48, No. 2

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