Contact: Sgt. Gregory Rhodes, Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement, 302-739-9913 or 302-542-6102, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
DNREC Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Blotter: Aug. 20-27
Reminders for the week: Have a safe holiday weekend on Delaware waterways
DOVER (Aug. 30, 2013) – 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 Natural Resources Police, Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Agents between Aug. 20-27 made 1,064 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 207 vessel boardings for boating safety/fishing regulation compliance checks. Agents responded to 40 complaints and issued 30 citations, six of which were associated with increased Fish and Wildlife Enforcement presence at the C&D Canal Conservation Area (formerly the C&D Canal Wildlife Area) and the associated recreational trail currently under construction.
Incidents of particular note were:
· On Aug. 22, Douglas E. Shetzler Jr., 47, of Wilmington, was cited for one count each of improperly marked recreational crab pot, and use of recreational crab pot without required turtle excluder in the Delaware River off Bay View Beach near Port Penn.
· On Aug. 25, two New Castle County men were cited for crabbing-related and boating safety violations. Thomas W. Glanding, 49, of Townsend, was cited for one count each of tending over the limit recreational crab pots, commercial crab pot tampering, operating a motor vessel without required flares, and operating a motor vessel without a fire extinguisher. Travis J. Glanding, 18, of Middletown, was cited for one count each of commercial crab pot tampering and tending over the limit recreational crab pots.
· On Aug. 25, Fish and Wildlife Enforcement assisted with the rescue and capture of an injured bald eagle from a busy roadway near New Castle. The eagle was transported to Tri-State Bird Rescue in Newark. Following surgery to repair an injured wing and shoulder, Tri-State veterinarians are monitoring the eagle’s progress.
Citations issued by violation type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway in a state wildlife area (1)*, and trespassing in a closed area of a state wildlife area (3)*, New Castle County; Trespassing after hours in a state wildlife area (1), Sussex County.
Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Unlicensed fishing (1)*, possession of undersized blue crabs (1), improperly marked recreational crab pot (1), and use of recreational crab pots without required turtle excluder (1), New Castle County; Over the limit recreational crab pots (2), Kent County; Possession of undersized summer flounder (1), Sussex County.
Commercial: Possession of undersized blue crabs (1), and commercial crabbing license not in possession (2), New Castle County; Illegally tending commercial crab pots (2), Kent County.
Boating Safety: Operating an unregistered vessel (1), New Castle County; No fire extinguisher on board/required safety equipment (1), and no flares on board/required safety equipment (1), Kent County; No life jacket on a child age 12 or younger as required by law (3), slow no wake violation (2), allowing use of a non-compliant vessel (1), and no boat ramp certificate (1), Sussex County.
Public Safety: Unlicensed driving (1)*, New Castle County; Operating an unregistered vehicle (2), New Castle and Sussex counties.
*These citations were issued in connection with violations at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Fish and Wildlife Enforcement News and Training
· Two Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Agents, Sr. Cpl. Drew Aydelotte and AFC. Oran White, completed the National Association of State Boating Law Administrator’s Officer Water Survival Instructor’s Certification Course, held Aug. 12-16 at Colby College in Maine. Training focused on marine law enforcement officers’ self-rescue and included drills on swimming and treading water while wearing full uniform, bullet-proof vest, and 12-lb. gun belt. Sr. Cpl. Casey Zolper completed the course in June.
· On Aug. 20, Sr. Cpl. Richard Blaasch did education and outreach for Fish and Wildlife Enforcement during the Smyrna Police Department’s Night Out, displaying a marked patrol boat and providing information on boating safety, fishing, and hunting to approximately 100 citizens who visited the display.
· In September, Fish and Wildlife Agent Sr. Cpl. Drew Aydelotte will be recognized as Delaware’s Boating Law Enforcement Officer of the Year by the National Association of Boating Law Administrators at their annual conference in Boise, Idaho.
Are you AWARE?
For the Labor Day holiday weekend, the Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section and its Office of Boating Safety and Education remind boaters that drinking and boating don’t mix – and that boat operators found to have blood alcohol levels of .08 or higher will face charges for operating a vessel under the influence as well as putting themselves, their passengers and other boaters at risk.
“Environmental stressors aboard a boat such as constant motion, heat, sun glare and dehydration enhance the effects of any amount of alcohol. Because of this, the Office of Boating Safety strongly recommends that boat operators not consume alcohol. We also encourage having a non-drinking designated boat operator,” said Sgt. Gregory Rhodes, Office of Boating Safety and Education, adding that marine patrols will be increased during the holiday weekend to ensure safe boating and public safety.
Other tips for recreational boaters to ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend include:
· Exercise patience and courtesy at crowded boat ramps and docks.
· Observe all “slow - no wake” areas.
· Maintain a lookout for other vessels and keep a safe distance away.
· Avoid traveling at unsafe speeds, including congested areas.
· Do not allow youth under age 16 to operate jet skis.
· Make sure children 12 and younger are wearing life jackets while underway as required by law.
· Wear your life jacket and encourage all your passengers 13 and older to wear them also.
· Check navigation lights and make sure to turn them on when operating at night.
For more information, please visit Delaware_Boating_Safety
Also, Fish and Wildlife Enforcement would like to advise residents who live near sunflower fields or other dove hunting areas that dove season opens Monday, Sept. 2, and that they should not be alarmed to hear gunshots coming from these areas when the season opens.
For more information, click Delaware’s dove, resident Canada goose and teal seasons to open in September .
The DNREC Division of Fish and 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 and 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 .
Vol. 43, No. 340