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 July 18-25
Reminder for the week: Anglers prohibited from keeping some shark species
DOVER (July 27, 2012) – 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 agents responded to 39 complaints and issued 39 citations between July 18 and July 25.
Citations issued by violation type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Recreational Fisheries Conservation: Fishing without a license (8), New Castle, Kent and Sussex counties; possession of undersized blue crabs (2), New Castle and Sussex counties; possession of dismembered summer flounder (1), and tampering with recreational crab pot (1), Kent County; possession of undersized knobbed conch by recreational anglers (3), possession of undersized Atlantic croaker (6), possession of undersized sponge crab (2), improper recreational crab pot marking (1), use of recreational crab pot without by-catch excluder (1), clamming in polluted area (3), possession of undersized shark (1), and failure to release shark unharmed (3), Sussex County.
Wildlife Conservation: Trespassing in a state wildlife area after hours (2), Sussex County.
Boating Safety: No life jackets on children age 12 or younger as required by law (2), operating a motor vessel without a boating safety certificate (1), operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets aboard (2), and owner allowing use of non-compliant vessel (1), Sussex County.
Are you AWARE?
The Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section reminds anglers of Delaware fisheries regulations on catching and keeping sharks:
· Sharks are managed by the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, and state regulations are subject to any changes in federal regulations.
· Anglers are prohibited from keeping sand tiger sharks and sandbar sharks; both species are protected due to their low reproductive rate and overfishing. Sand tigers are gray-brown to tan with dark splotches and lengths to 10.5 feet. Sandbar sharks are heavy-bodied, dark gray to brown on their backs, fading to almost white on the belly. If caught, these sharks must be released immediately in a manner that will ensure maximum probability of survival, preferably without removing them from the water.
· Spiny dogfish – easily identified by a thorny spine at the leading edge of first and second dorsal fins – and smooth dogfish – gray-brown and up to 5 feet long – may be caught and kept. Open season is all year, with no minimum size or daily limit.
· For regulations on other shark species, and other fishing information, please consult the 2012 Delaware Fishing Guide at your local tackle shop or license dealer, or check it out online at www.fw.delaware.gov/fisheries.
Citizens are encouraged to report fish and wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section by calling 302-739-4580.
Vol. 42, No. 285