Contact: Cpl. John McDerby, DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913 or 302-354-1386, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter:
Aug. 31-Sept. 6
Reminder for the week: Purchase your 2015/2016 Delaware hunting license now
DOVER (Sept. 11, 2015) – 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 Natural Resources Police officers between Aug. 31-Sept. 6 made 2,496 contacts with anglers, boaters, hunters and the general public, including 638 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Officers responded to 96 complaints and issued 93 citations, two of which were related to the C&D Canal Conservation Area and associated recreational trail, where there is an increased Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence.
Incidents of particular note:
· On Sept. 4, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers cited William E. Berry, 71, of Smyrna, for two counts of possession of a prohibited shark species and one count of failure to observe a slow-no-wake zone near Cedar Creek. Berry was issued a $321 fine, including court costs.
· On Sept. 4, Michael Bunting, 32, of Frankford, was taken into custody at the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles on an outstanding warrant for wildlife-related violations. He was charged with one count each of possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle and discharging a firearm within 15 yards of a public roadway in connection with a June 28, 2015 incident in Frankford. Bunting pled not guilty to the charges in Justice of the Peace Court 3 in Georgetown and was released on $500 unsecured bond pending trial at a later date.
· On Sept. 6, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers arrested two men for operating vessels under the influence of alcohol (OUI) and other boating violations on the C&D Canal. Dalton Church, 23, of Bear, was charged with OUI while operating a jet ski, negligent operation of a vessel and no boating safety certificate. Benjamin Williams, 52, of Woodstown, N.J., was charged with OUI. Both were taken to Delaware State Police Troop 9 in Odessa for a breathalyzer test and released pending mandatory appearances in Justice of the Peace Court 11 in New Castle at a later date.
Citations issued this week by offense type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area (2)*, and use of lead shot for hunting on a wildlife area (1). Note: Only non-toxic shot may be used on state wildlife areas during September dove season.
Fisheries Conservation: Recreational: Fishing without a license (13), possession of undersized blue crabs (8), recreational crab pot tampering (1), use of recreational crab pots without required turtle excluder (2), possession of a prohibited shark species (2), possession of undersized black sea bass (4), possession of undersized black drum (3), and possession of undersized summer flounder (9).
Boating and Boating Safety: Operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol (2), negligent operation of a vessel (1), operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets (2), no life jacket on a child age 12 or younger as required by law (6), no throwable life preserver aboard as required for vessels 16 feet long or longer/required safety equipment (1), failure to observe slow-no-wake zone (9), operating a motor vessel with an expired registration/operating an unregistered vessel (2), allowing use of a non-compliant vessel (3), no boat ramp certificate (2), and no boating safety certificate (10).
Public Safety: Possession of marijuana (3), possession of drug paraphernalia (2), possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle (1), discharging a firearm within 15 yards of a public roadway (1), operating an unregistered vehicle (2), and striking an occupied dwelling with shot discharged from a firearm (1).
* These citations were issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Are you AWARE?
With fall hunting seasons underway, DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind hunters to purchase their 2015/2016 Delaware hunting licenses and waterfowl stamps. A resident annual hunting license costs $25 for ages 16 through 64. A resident junior hunting license costs $5 for ages 13 through 15.
Residents younger than 13 or those 65 and older are not required to purchase a Delaware hunting license; residents younger than 16 or those 65 and older are not required to purchase a Delaware waterfowl stamp. Higher license prices apply to non-resident hunters, and no exemptions are made for non-residents age 65 and older on purchasing a hunting license or waterfowl stamp.
To hunt waterfowl in Delaware, residents age 16 through 64 are required to purchase a Delaware waterfowl stamp. For hunters age 16 and older, a federal migratory bird hunting stamp is required to hunt waterfowl. Federal duck stamps may be purchased at U.S Post Offices, Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges and online at www.fws.gov/duckstamps. For more information, call 800-STAMP24 (800-782-6724).
Hunters who are exempt from purchasing a license must obtain an annual, free License Exempt Number (LEN). Hunters of migratory gamebirds, including waterfowl, dove, woodcock and rail, also must obtain a free Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number. Both are available online or by calling 855-335-4868 toll-free.
If hunting waterfowl on a state wildlife area from a blind that was selected through a lottery, all hunters in the blind are required to carry their $20 annual blind permit. This permit is waived for hunters participating in Division of Fish & Wildlife-designated youth hunting days.
Delaware hunting licenses, blind permits and waterfowl stamps are sold online, at the licensing office in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and by license agents statewide. To find a participating hunting license agent, to purchase a license or blind permit or to obtain a HIP or LEN number online, click Delaware Licenses and Permits. For additional information on Delaware hunting licenses, call 302-739-9918.
For more information on hunting in Delaware, click 2015-2016 Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide. The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk, and from license agents throughout the state.
DNREC’s 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, wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030 or online at http://de.gov/ogt.
Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, www.facebook.com/pages/Delaware-Fish-Wildlife-Natural-Resources-Police.Vol. 45, No. 297