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: Dec. 10-17
Reminder for the week: Tips to ensure your boat is properly stored for winter
DOVER (Dec. 20, 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 Dec. 10-17 made 640 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 42 vessel boardings for boating safety/fishing regulation compliance checks. Agents responded to 29 complaints and issued 16 citations, one of which was associated with increased Fish and Wildlife Enforcement presence at the C&D Canal Conservation Area (formerly the C&D Canal Wildlife Area) and the recreational trail there currently under construction.
Incidents of particular note were:
· On Dec. 17, Fish and Wildlife agents cited Paul E. Tackett Jr., 30, of New Castle, for one count each of trespassing to trap and possession of illegally taken muskrat, on private lands bordering the Christina River in New Castle. Tackett was taken into custody on unrelated warrants out of the New Castle County Court of Common Pleas and Justice of the Peace Court 11 in New Castle, and was committed to Howard R. Young Correctional Institute in Wilmington in default of $750 cash bond.
· On Dec. 14, Fish and Wildlife agents joined Delaware and Maryland State Police, Maryland Natural Resources Police and several local fire companies in a search for a lost hunter near Frankford. The hunter, who became lost while tracking a deer, was located and treated for mild hypothermia.
· On Dec. 10, Fish and Wildlife agents arrested Matthew Oddo, 23, of Millsboro, following an investigation near the town, and charged him with failure to register antlerless deer within the required 24-hour period. Oddo was arraigned at Justice of the Peace Court 3 in Georgetown and released pending trial at a later date.
Citations issued by violation type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Hunting migratory waterfowl after sunset (1), trespassing on a closed portion of a state wildlife area (1)*, trespassing to trap (1), and possession of illegally taken muskrat (1), New Castle County; Hunting migratory waterfowl with an unplugged shotgun (2), possession of prohibited lead shot while hunting migratory waterfowl (2), hunting migratory waterfowl on a closed state wildlife area (1), and trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (2), Kent County; Failure to register antlerless deer within the required 24-hour period (1), and hunting waterfowl without required federal waterfowl stamp (1), Sussex County.
Boating Safety: Operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets aboard (1), operating an unregistered motor vessel (1), and no navigation lights/required safety equipment (1), New Castle County.
* This citation was issued in connection with violations at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Are you AWARE?
With the arrival of cold winter weather, DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section, Delaware Office of Boating Safety and Education reminds boaters who keep their vessels stored on trailers outside to check for accumulations of ice and water, and to follow these tips for keeping them well-drained and in good condition for next year’s boating season:
· Invest in a cover to keep your boat clean and free from dirt, water, leaves and other debris, and to block UV rays from damaging hoses and upholstery.
· Engines should be flushed and drained, following manufacturer’s instructions for the type of engine, including adding antifreeze as specified.
· Treat fuel with a fuel stabilizer and disconnect the battery to avoid discharging the battery over the winter.
· Engines should be stored in the proper position to allow rainwater and melting snow and ice to drain.
· Make sure bilge plugs are out and scupper holes are clear of debris, so water will drain.
“Water allowed to build up in the hull or engine can freeze and expand, possibly damaging metal, wood, fiberglass and plastic parts, and leading to expensive repairs,” said Sgt. Gregory Rhodes of the Office of Boating Safety and Education. “With appropriate time and care, your boat can weather the winter and be ready for the next boating season with only routine maintenance needed.”
For more details and tips on winter boat care, click How to Winterize Your Boat, or visit the U.S. Coast Guard’s link at Coast Guard boat winterization-101.
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. 472