Enjoy trout season while maintaining a safe distance from other anglers and fishing less-crowded areas

Downstate ponds open; upstate streams opening early for anglers next week

DOVER, Del. – Take advantage of the early opening of the upstate trout season for adult anglers on Tuesday, March 31 to help minimize crowds and accommodate responsible outdoor recreation during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) period. Anglers are reminded to practice safe social distancing – a minimum of six feet, or about the length of some fishing rods – and to choose less-crowded areas to cast their lines into the streams.

Getting outdoors is a great way to reduce stress and enjoy fresh air to help physical and mental well-being, however, everyone is reminded to be considerate of others and to act responsibly. DNREC’s Natural Resources Police will have a presence at the streams to monitor fishing and angler activity for crowding and appropriate distancing.

Upstate trout season will open in seven designated trout streams in northern New Castle County for only youth anglers under age 16 on Monday, March 30 at 7 a.m., followed by the opening of trout season for all anglers on Tuesday, March 31 starting one half-hour before sunrise. Youth anglers can be accompanied by adults on the March 30 youth day, but only youth can fish that day.

White Clay Creek, Red Clay Creek, Christina Creek, Pike Creek, Beaver Run, Wilson Run, and Mill Creek will be stocked with thousands of rainbow and brown trout, including some trophy-sized fish. Trout stocking is currently planned to continue weekly in April at White Clay Creek and periodically at the other streams prior to or until Thursday, April 30.

Downstate trout season remains open at Tidbury Pond near Dover and Newton Pond near Greenwood, both of which opened March 7.

All plans are subject to change based on health and safety considerations and any changes will be announced.

Trout anglers planning to fish the New Castle County trout streams should note the following rules and regulations:

  • Stocked trout streams are currently closed to all fishing through Sunday, March 29 to accommodate trout stocking, eliminate incidental hooking of trout, and allow stocked trout time to adjust to their new waters, all done to improve trout fishing when the season opens.
  • A Delaware fishing license is required, unless an angler is exempt.
  • A Delaware trout stamp is required until June 30, unless an angler is exempt.
  • Following the opening youth day start at 7 a.m. on March 30, trout fishing at these streams is open one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset, unless otherwise restricted by area rules.
  • The daily possession limit is six trout, except inside or within 50 feet of the designated fly-fishing-only section of White Clay Creek, where the daily possession limit is four trout.

Managed by the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife, proceeds from the purchase of Delaware trout stamps are used to help purchase next year’s trout for stocking. The popular fishery also is supported by federal Sport Fish Restoration funds administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that are generated from anglers purchasing fishing equipment.

Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps are sold online and by license agents statewide that remain open (license sales are suspended at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson and Robbins Building in Dover during the coronavirus outbreak). To purchase a license online or to find a participating agent (agents should be contacted to determine if they are open), visit dnrec.delaware.gov. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.

Additional information about Delaware Trout Season is available online. For general information on fishing in Delaware, check out the 2020 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available from license agents that remain open.

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 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 DNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contact: Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov

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Modified upstate stream trout season to open in New Castle County streams

Anglers encouraged to practice responsible social distancing; trout streams closed March 21 until opening

DOVER, Del. –The opening day for Delaware’s spring 2020 upstate stream trout season has been changed to minimize crowds and accommodate responsible outdoor recreation during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) period. Trout season will open several days earlier than planned in seven designated trout streams in northern New Castle County for only youth anglers under age 16 on Monday, March 30 at 7 a.m., followed by the opening of trout season for all anglers on Tuesday, March 31 starting one half-hour before sunrise. Youth anglers can be accompanied by adults but fishing on March 30 should only be by the youth.

Anglers are encouraged to fish in less crowded portions of the streams and practice recommended social distancing while fishing, which is currently six feet from other individuals, approximately the length of some fishing rods.

White Clay Creek, Red Clay Creek, Christina Creek, Pike Creek, Beaver Run, Wilson Run, and Mill Creek will be stocked with thousands of rainbow and brown trout, including some trophy-sized fish. Trout stocking is planned to continue weekly in April at White Clay Creek and periodically at the other streams prior to or until Thursday, April 30.

All plans are subject to change based on health and safety considerations, and any further restrictions or changes to the season will be announced.

Trout anglers planning to fish the New Castle County trout streams should note the following rules and regulations:

  • Stocked trout streams are closed to all fishing from Saturday, March 21 through Sunday, March 29 to accommodate trout stocking, eliminate incidental hooking of trout, and allow stocked trout time to adjust to their new waters, all done to improve trout fishing when the season opens.
  • A Delaware fishing license is required, unless an angler is exempt.
  • A Delaware trout stamp is required until June 30, unless an angler is exempt.
  • Following the opening youth day start at 7 a.m. on March 30, trout fishing at these streams is open one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset, unless otherwise restricted by area rules.
  • The daily possession limit is six trout, except inside or within 50 feet of the designated fly-fishing-only section of White Clay Creek, where the daily possession limit is four trout.

Downstate trout season remains open at Tidbury Pond near Dover and Newton Pond near Greenwood, both of which opened March 7.

Managed by the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife, proceeds from the purchase of Delaware trout stamps are used to help purchase next year’s trout for stocking. The popular fishery also is supported by federal Sport Fish Restoration funds administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that are generated from anglers purchasing fishing equipment.

Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps are sold online and by license agents statewide that remain open (license sales are suspended at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building in Dover during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak). To purchase a license online or to find a participating agent (agents should be contacted to determine if they are open), visit dnrec.delaware.gov. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.

Additional information about Delaware Trout Season is available online. For general information on fishing in Delaware, check out the 2020 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available from license agents that remain open.

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 Division of Fish & 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 @DNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, Joanna.wilson@delaware.gov

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Spring trout stocking and March 7 season opening at downstate ponds announced

Stocked ponds closed to all fishing from Feb. 22 until opening day March 7

DOVER – DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announced today that Delaware’s spring 2020 downstate freshwater trout season will begin at 7 a.m., Saturday, March 7, with the opening of two downstate ponds stocked with rainbow trout. Both Tidbury Pond near Dover in Kent County and Newton Pond near Greenwood in Sussex County will be stocked and open on that date for trout fishing, provided that pond ice conditions do not prevent stocking or fishing.

Each pond will be stocked with more than 300 pounds of 12- to 13-inch rainbow trout before opening day, with a second stocking in March. Trophy-sized trout weighing two or more pounds will be included in the stocking as an added attraction for trout anglers.

Trout anglers planning to fish Tidbury or Newton pond should note the following rules and regulations:

  • A Delaware fishing license is required, unless an angler is exempt.
  • A Delaware trout stamp is required from the first Saturday in March through April 1, unless an angler is exempt.
  • Following the opening day 7 a.m. start, trout fishing at these ponds is open one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset, unless otherwise restricted by area rules.
  • The daily possession limit is six trout.
  • Both ponds are closed to all fishing for 14 days prior to the season opening, with the ponds closed from Saturday, Feb. 22 through Friday, March 6 to accommodate trout stocking, eliminate incidental hooking of trout, and allow stocked trout time to adjust to their new waters, all done to improve trout fishing when the season opens.

Proceeds from the purchase of Delaware trout stamps are used to help purchase next year’s trout for stocking. The popular fishery also is supported by federal Sport Fish Restoration funds administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that are generated from anglers purchasing fishing equipment.

Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, 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, click Delaware Trout Season. For general information on fishing in Delaware, click 2020 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 the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

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


DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announces Delaware Waterfowl Stamp and Trout Stamp winners

        The 2020 Delaware Trout Stamp art by Jeffrey Klinefelter of Etna Green, Ind.

DOVER – The results are in, and two artists have won top honors in Delaware’s Waterfowl Stamp and Trout Stamp art contests. A painting of an American wigeon and a chocolate Labrador retriever by Guy Crittenden of Richmond, Va., will grace the 2020/21 Delaware Waterfowl Stamp. A painting of a rainbow trout by Jeffrey Klinefelter of Etna Green, Ind., will adorn the 2020 Delaware Trout Stamp. Both contests are sponsored by the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Division of Fish & Wildlife.

The annual stamp art competition, held April 4 at the Dover Public Library, drew 19 entries for the 2020/21 Waterfowl Stamp and 11 entries for the 2020 Trout Stamp. The Waterfowl Stamp contest specified that submitted artwork must include an American wigeon and a chocolate Labrador retriever. Trout Stamp artwork entries could be of a rainbow, brown, or brook trout.

As the 2020/21 Delaware Waterfowl Stamp winner, Guy Crittenden receives a $2,500 prize and 150 artist’s proofs of the limited edition print series of his first-place entry. A naturalist with an interest in ornithology, Crittenden began drawing and painting at an early age based on his experiences with nature. He has won the Virginia Migratory Waterfowl Conservation Stamp competition seven times, including the 2019/20 contest in March. This is his first Delaware Waterfowl Stamp win. In addition to Delaware and Virginia, Crittenden has won waterfowl stamp contests in nine other states. The artist also owns a commercial photography and video production company in Richmond, Va.

As the 2020 Delaware Trout Stamp winner, Jeffrey Klinefelter receives a $250 prize and retains the rights to reproduce and sell prints of the stamp artwork. After developing an interest in drawing and painting at a young age, Klinefelter graduated from Indiana University’s Herron School of Art. His interest in wildlife art came a few years later when he entered the Federal Duck Stamp and Indiana Duck Stamp contests. Since then, he has won numerous stamp contests, including three Delaware Waterfowl Stamp contests and five Delaware Trout Stamp contests. He has also won the 2016/17 Ohio Wetland Habitat Stamp competition and the 2015 Connecticut Duck Stamp contest.

Other winners were:

  • 2020/21 Waterfowl Stamp: Second place, Jeffrey Klinefelter, Etna Green, Ind.; Third place, Mark Thone, Shakopee, Minn.; Honorable mentions: Scott Calpino, Bernville, Pa.; Caleb Metrich, Lake Tomahawk, Wis.; and Karin Snoots, Harbeson, Del.
  • 2020 Trout Stamp: Second place, Eric Jablonowski, Suwanee, Ga., rainbow trout; Third place, Ryan Rickaby, Green Bay, Wis., brown trout. Honorable mentions: Micah Hanson, St. Charles, Minn., brown trout; Jeffrey Klinefelter, Etna Green, Ind., brown trout; and Ryan Peterson, Jackson, Wyo., brown trout.

The winning 2020/21 Delaware Waterfowl Stamp will be available for purchase July 1, 2020, and the winning 2020 Delaware Trout Stamp will be available for purchase Jan. 1, 2020.

Waterfowl and Trout Stamp entries will be on display Monday, April 15 through Friday, April 26 in the Licensing Office at DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901. Hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays. For more information, please call 302-739-9918.

The 2020/21 Waterfowl Stamp judges were: Nathan Hudson, member of the Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish; Raymond Harp, Delaware Ducks Unlimited representative;
Ken Reynolds, retired wildlife professional; Jim Hall, hunter and cultural historian; and Justyn Foth, wildlife biologist.

The 2020 Trout Stamp judges were: Cathy Martin, retired fisheries professional; Ian Park, fisheries biologist; Roy Miller, angler; Noel Kuhrt, art collector and angler; and Capt. Nick Couch, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police.

The Division of Fish & Wildlife, in partnership with Ducks Unlimited, started the Delaware Waterfowl Stamp (formerly known as the Delaware Duck Stamp) and print program in 1980 to raise funds for waterfowl conservation, including acquiring and improving wetland habitats vital to the survival of migratory waterfowl. To date, more than $3 million has been raised. A Delaware Waterfowl Stamp and hunting license are required by most waterfowl hunters.

The Division of Fish & Wildlife began requiring trout stamps for anglers in the 1950s, and a trout stamp and a general fishing license are required by most anglers to fish in designated trout waters during certain seasons, with the funds from the sale of the stamps used to purchase trout to stock in two downstate ponds and selected streams in northern New Castle County.

Delaware hunting and fishing licenses, as well as Waterfowl Stamps and Trout Stamps, are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, and by license agents statewide. To find a participating agent, or to purchase licenses or stamps online, visit Delaware Licenses. For additional information on Delaware hunting and fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.

For more information on Delaware’s Waterfowl and Trout Stamp art competitions, please call DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife at 302-739-9918, or visit Delaware Waterfowl Stamp and Delaware Trout Stamp.

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. 84

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DNREC announces changes to New Castle County trout stocking locations on Mill, Pike, and Red Clay creeks

Property ownership changes and construction projects prompt changes; anglers encouraged to respect private property

DOVER – Recent changes in property ownership and ongoing construction projects have prompted changes to some traditional trout stocking locations at Mill, Pike, and Red Clay creeks, DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announced today. Trout stocking locations are unchanged this year at Beaver Run, Christina Creek, White Clay Creek, and Wilson Run.

The following locations on Mill, Pike, and Red Clay creeks will be stocked with trout in 2019:
Mill Creek

  • Girl Scout Camp, 3850 Mill Creek Road
  • Mill Creek Road Open Space, across the road from Mockingbird Hills Development
  • Limestone Hills Park, 3045 Stoney Batter Road – from Stony Batter Road Bridge upstream approximately 250 yards

Pike Creek

  • Granville Road bridge, downstream of bridge ONLY
  • Linden Hill Road bridge, downstream of bridge ONLY
  • Pike Creek Road bridge

Red Clay Creek

  • Benge Road bridge downstream to the Yorklyn Road Bridge (Trout will not be stocked from the Pennsylvania state line downstream to the Farm Lane bridge, due to bridge construction.)

Trout stream directional signs will be posted at Mill, Pike, and Red Clay creeks prior to opening day to help guide anglers to the stocked waters. Anglers are reminded to access only those waters that are open to public access, and to identify property boundaries and obtain permission from property owners before fishing on private lands. Landowners are not required to post their property.

Mill Creek and Pike Creek, as well as Beaver Run, Christina Creek, White Clay Creek, and Wilson Run, are being stocked prior to the trout season, and are closed to all fishing until 7 a.m. on the April 6 trout season opening day. Trout will be stocked in Red Clay Creek on April 8, at which time anglers can fish for trout as soon as the fish are stocked. All trout streams will be periodically restocked with trout during the spring trout season.

The daily possession limit is six trout per person. There is no minimum size limit for freshwater trout, in part, since they are a cold water species that survive only while water temperatures remain cool, so anglers are encouraged to keep their catch within established possession limits.

For more information, including the revised stocking schedule, click Delaware Trout Season. Information on fishing license and trout stamp requirements can be found at Delaware Licenses. For general information on fishing in Delaware, click 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 the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

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

Vol.49, No. 80