Contact: Cpl. John McDerby, Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913 or 302-354-1386, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
DNREC Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Blotter: Oct. 14-20
Reminder for week: Waterfowl hunters, check your gear for prohibited lead shot
DOVER (Oct. 24, 2014) – 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 Natural Resources Police officers between Oct. 14-20 made 4515 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 69 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Agents responded to 34 complaints and issued 25 citations, five of which were related to increased Fish & Wildlife Enforcement presence at the C&D Canal Conservation Area and associated recreational trail.
An incident of particular note was:
· On Oct. 15, following an investigation, Fish & Wildlife Enforcement agents arrested Richard S. Hahn, 51, of Newark, and charged him with two counts of hunting license forgery or misrepresentation and five counts of failure to check antlered/antlerless deer within 24 hours for two does and three bucks taken over the past year, with offenses occurring at locations in all three counties. Hahn pled guilty to one count of each offense in Justice of the Peace Court 7 in Dover and paid fines and court costs totaling $1,599. The court also issued Hahn a no-contact order with state wildlife areas in all three counties for one year.
Citations issued by offense type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway on a state wildlife area (4)*, New Castle County; Failure to check antlered/antlerless deer within 24 hours (5), failure to display required hunter orange during a firearms deer season (1), and possession of a loaded firearm on or against a vehicle (1), Kent County.
Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Fishing/crabbing without a license (3), and possession of undersized blue crabs (2), Sussex County.
Commercial: Possession of undersized oysters (2), and improperly marked net (1), Kent County.
Boating and Boating Safety: Operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets (2), Kent County.
Public Safety: Driving with a suspended or revoked license (1)*, New Castle County.
Other: Hunting license forgery or misrepresentation (2), Kent County; Third degree criminal trespass (1), Sussex County.
* These citations were issued in connection with violations at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Fish and Wildlife Enforcement News, Outreach and Training
· On Oct. 15, AFC Dan Carrow and Agent Chelsea Allen displayed the Operation Game Theft trailer and an Enforcement patrol vessel at Cedar Lane Elementary School in Middletown and answered many questions from students regarding wildlife and hunting, boating and water safety. On Oct. 18, AFC Carrow displayed the trailer at the Blackbird Creek Fall Festival near Townsend and talked with numerous visitors to the event.
Are you AWARE?
With fall’s first split hunting season for ducks opening today, DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Section reminds waterfowl hunters to check their hunting gear bags, coats, boats and any other gear to make sure they are not carrying any lead shot.
“Small game hunters sometimes forget to remove boxes of lead shot from their hunting bags or accidentally leave extra lead shells in their hunting coat pockets when they go waterfowl hunting,” said Cpl. John McDerby of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement. “Using lead shot for waterfowl hunting is prohibited to prevent lead contamination of habitats and ingestion poisoning of wildlife, and hunters can be fined for possession of lead shot while waterfowl hunting, whether the shot is loaded or simply carried.”
In order to hunt, Delaware residents age 16 or older and under the age of 65 and non-residents age 16 or older must purchase a hunting license to hunt in Delaware. A junior hunting license is required for youths age 13 through 15. Delaware hunting licenses are sold online, at the licensing office in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and by license agents statewide. To find the participating agent nearest you, or to purchase a license online, visit Delaware Licenses. For additional information on Delaware hunting licenses, call 302-739-9918.
Hunters age 16 and older who hunt migratory waterfowl – including resident Canada geese – are required to purchase a Delaware Waterfowl Stamp, available for purchase online or from Delaware license agents. Delaware resident hunters 65 and older are not required to purchase a Delaware Waterfowl Stamp. A Federal Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp, available for purchase online and at U.S. Post Offices, is required for all waterfowl hunters age 16 and older; no exemptions are made for persons 65 years or older for purchasing federal stamps.
Hunters who are exempt from purchasing a license must obtain an annual, free License Exempt Number (LEN). Hunters who plan to pursue migratory game birds such as ducks, geese and doves, also must obtain a HIP number as required under the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Harvest Information Program. LEN and HIP numbers can be obtained through the Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Hunter and Trapper Registration System (HTR). This free, easy-to-use system is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To use the new HTR system, please visit www.dnrec.delaware.gov/delhunt. If you prefer to talk to a live customer service representative, please call 855-DELHUNT (855-335-4868).
For more information on waterfowl hunting in Delaware, click on 2014-2015 Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide and the 2014-2015 Migratory Game Bird Seasons. The guide and the migratory bird season summary also are available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk, and from license agents throughout the state.
The DNREC Division of Fish & 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 & 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. 44, No. 374