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

DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife announces
2012 Delaware Fishing Photo Contest winners 

DOVER (Nov. 1, 2012) – The judges’ decisions are in, with five top entries chosen for the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife’s 2012 Delaware Fishing Photo Contest.

Three judges – nationally-renowned Delaware photographer Kevin Fleming, and local photographers Tony Pratt and Freda Barrett, both DNREC employees – reviewed 52 entries and then narrowed the entries to the top five. The contest specified that photographs must have been taken in Delaware and must depict youth participating in fishing activities. Judges were looking for photos that best portrayed this year’s contest theme, “Carrying on the Tradition.”

"It was great to see so many nice photographs, especially of children enjoying Delaware's outdoors,” said Mr. Fleming. “I hope seeing this year's winners will inspire Delawareans to bring both their cameras and fishing rods so we have an even bigger and better contest next year."

The theme "Carrying on the Tradition" carried a lot of photographic consideration from the judges in selecting winning entries.

“We also considered technical criteria such as resolution, clarity, lighting and composition,” said Mr. Pratt. “Some entries fit the theme, but had flaws such as poor lighting, an undesirable background or out-of-focus. Our winners are crisp close-ups of youth participating in fishing activities.”

“We had a good selection of entries this year, and I look forward to having some of these Delaware children and their family members pictured in next year’s fishing guide,” said Ms. Barrett. “To see the looks on the children’s faces as they make a catch demonstrates how important it is for children to get outside and experience nature,” she added.

The judges awarded first place to “Em’s First Fish,” by Joseph J. Corning of Felton. Mr. Corning took the portrait of his granddaughter, 8-year-old Emily Bonavita, when he took her on her first fishing trip. Clutching a bright pink fishing rod, Emily excitedly shows off her first catch, a bluegill that she caught at McGinnis Pond.

The other contest winners are:

  • Second place: “Fishing Across Generations,” shows 3-year-old Lauren Myers learning the ins and outs of a fishing rod from her grandfather, Robert Cox, at Bethany Beach, taken by Brandy Myers of Millsboro.
  • Honorable mention: “Lessons Learned,” of 9-year-old Seth Reynolds with his great uncle, Carl Lilieberg, showing off the fish he caught in Middletown’s Noxontown Pond, taken by Ruth Reynolds of Townsend.
  • Honorable mention: “Crabbing 101,” by David Koster of Rehoboth Beach, portrays his 8-year-old son Dillon Koster with a blue crab at Indian River Inlet Marina during Delaware Seashore State Park’s class on crabbing.
  • Honorable mention: “Carrying on the Tradition,” by Sean O’Donnell of Newark, catches his 5-year-old son Finn O’Donnell as he eyes the red breast sunfish he caught in White Clay Creek in Newark.

“Our fishing photo contest encourages children to participate in healthy outdoor recreation, a key goal of the Department’s Children in Nature initiative,” Division of Fish and Wildlife Director David Saveikis said. “These images of young anglers carrying on Delaware’s great outdoors fishing tradition show great promise for the future and the next generation of conservationists, and we’re sure the public will once again enjoy seeing them in action.” The response from Delaware photographers to the contest over the last two years has more than met expectations, Saveikis added.

The winning photos, which are now posted online at, will appear in the 2013 Delaware Fishing Guide. The fishing guide will be available online, at the DNREC license counter in Dover, and at fishing license dealers statewide early in 2013.

The 2012 Delaware Hunting Photo Contest is accepting entries now through Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013. Entries may be mailed to the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife, Attention: Amanda Belford, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901. All entries must be postmarked or delivered by Jan. 12, and must include a completed and signed entry form and photo release form, available on the Division’s website at and the Fish and Wildlife Facebook page (search Delaware Fish & Wildlife), or may be requested by calling Amanda Belford at 302-739-9911, or email Winning photos will appear in the 2013-2014 Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide.

This project is part of Delaware’s Children in Nature Initiative, a statewide effort to improve environmental literacy in Delaware, create opportunities for children to participate in enriching outdoor experiences, combat childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles. Delaware’s multi-agency initiative, which partners state and federal agencies with community organizations, is part of the national No Child Left Inside program.

Vol. 42, No. 433
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