DOVER (Feb. 6, 2015) – To achieve public compliance through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Natural Resources Police officers between Jan. 26-Feb. 1 made 1,084 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 10 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Agents responded to 31 complaints and issued 23 citations. This week, with an expanded Fish & Wildlife Enforcement presence continuing to be deployed as a deterrent, no citations were issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and associated recreational trail.
Citations issued by offense type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Possession of unlawfully taken game/Canada goose (1), trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (1), and unlicensed hunting (1), New Castle County; Hunting in a closed area on a state wildlife area (5), Kent County; Failure to tag antlered deer (1), failure to tag antlerless deer (1), and spotlighting (1), Sussex County.
Public Safety: Possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle (2), and failure to display required hunter orange during a firearms deer season (2), Kent and Sussex counties; Reckless driving (1), driving with a suspended license (1), operating a motor vehicle without proof of insurance (1), passing in a no-passing zone (1), failure to use turn signal (1), and disregarding a traffic control device (1), Kent County; Third degree criminal trespass (1), and criminal mischief (1), Sussex County.
Are you AWARE?
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Section reminds hunters that the 2015 Snow Goose Conservation Order is closed Saturday, Feb. 7, to accommodate the youth waterfowl hunting day, but will reopen Monday, Feb. 9 and run through Saturday, April 11.
To take advantage of the Conservation Order, hunters must obtain a free Snow Goose Conservation Order permit number, which must be in their possession while pursuing snow geese. Hunters also are required to report their participation and success to the Division of Fish & Wildlife by Friday, May 1. Participants must have a valid Delaware hunting license or a Maryland resident hunting license, a 2014-15 Delaware waterfowl stamp and a Delaware Harvest Information Program (HIP) number. A federal waterfowl stamp is not required. To obtain a Snow Goose Conservation Order permit number or HIP number, and to report participation and success, please visit www.dnrec.delaware.gov/delhunt. Hunters needing assistance in obtaining a permit number should call 302-735-3600 during business hours Monday through Friday.
The Snow Goose Conservation Order allows use of unplugged shotguns, and electronic calls are permitted, with legal shooting hours starting a half-hour before sunrise and extended to a half-hour after sunset and daily bag and possession limits removed. Federal and state hunting regulations otherwise apply.
Most state wildlife areas will be open for the Conservation Order. Wildlife areas in New Castle and Sussex counties will be open on a first-come, first-serve basis with no registration required, except at Assawoman Wildlife Area, where hunters must self-register at the Assawoman check station. In Kent County, individual sign-in will be required at Woodland Beach, Little Creek and Ted Harvey wildlife areas. Sign-in will not be required at Blackiston, Milford Neck, or Norman G. Wilder wildlife areas. Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges are not participating in the Conservation Order.
To avoid conflicts with the spring 2015 wild turkey season, snow goose hunting will not be open on state wildlife areas after Friday, April 10. For more information, please call 302-739-9912 or visit www.fw.delaware.gov.
The DNREC 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 and wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Section by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030 or online at www.dnrec.delaware.gov/fw/Hunting/Pages/OpGameTheft.aspx.