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 11-18, 2012
Reminder for the week: Crabbers should know regulations on ‘keeper’ blue crabs
DOVER (July 20, 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 65 complaints and issued 85 citations between July 11 and July 18. Incidents of particular note included:
· On July 15, Fish and Wildlife agents working on an anonymous tip apprehended Demar T. President, 30, of Dover, who was wanted for failure to pay fines on charges of trespassing to hunt and failure to wear hunter orange during a firearms deer season. He was taken into custody and transported to Justice of the Peace Court 7 in Dover, where he paid the fines and was released.
· Also on July 15, agents cited a Sussex County woman for negligent operation of a vessel in connection with having a child on board without a life jacket and towing a teenager in an inflatable tube with six other vessels following in Indian River Inlet. The operator was warned of the dangers of towing inflatables through congested areas of boating traffic.
Citations issued by violation type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Recreational Fisheries Conservation: Fishing without a license (31), and possession of undersized blue crabs (22), New Castle, Kent and Sussex counties; possession of undersized striped bass (3), Sussex County; and possession of undersized white perch (3), New Castle County.
Wildlife Conservation: Trespassing in a state wildlife area after hours (8), Kent and Sussex counties; operating a motor vehicle off established roadways in a state wildlife area (1), New Castle County.
Boating Safety: Negligent operation of a motor vessel (1), no life jackets on children age 12 or younger as required by law (4), exceeding slow no-wake speed (3), operating a motor vessel without a boating safety certificate (2), and boating safety equipment violation (1), all Sussex County; operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets aboard (1), Kent County.
Public Safety: Operating a motor vehicle at an unsafe speed (1), and speed exhibition (1), New Castle County.
Other: Operating a motor vehicle without a license (1), operating an unregistered motor vehicle (1), and operating a motor vehicle without insurance (1), Kent County.
Are you AWARE?
The Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section reminds crabbers of Delaware fisheries regulations on catching and keeping blue crabs:
· The minimum size for keeping male blue crabs is 5 inches, measured from point to point on the top shell.
· Since female blue crabs may not measure 5 inches when they reach maturity and stop growing, regulations allow crabbers to keep mature females under 5 inches. Immature females must measure 5 inches to be keepers. Mature females (sooks) are identified by rounded apron on underside; immature females have a V-shaped apron.
· Crabbers may not keep females bearing eggs – identifiable by orange eggs visible under their apron. Egg-bearing females, known as sponge crabs, must be returned to the water immediately.
For more information on crabbing and other fishing information, pick up a copy of 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. 270