Sunday, May 08, 2011


Fishing offenses draw cautionary comment – and fines – from Fish & Wildlife Enforcement

DOVER (May 6, 2011) – After collecting fines from a string of diverse violations, Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement cautions anglers to know the state’s fishing regulations “chapter and verse” when dropping a line – or hook, or net – in Delaware waters. Recent offenses ranged from illegal netting in a spillway, possession of undersized striped bass, over the limit for river herring, over the limit for recreational crab pot tending, and the perennial reminder that fishing licenses are required (and have been since Jan. 1, 2008) in all Delaware waters.

Among the violations written up were:

· Evan M. Absher, age 18, of Seaford, charged with illegally netting fish in the spillway of Records Pond. Enforcement officers saw Mr. Absher crawl into the spillway carrying a dipnet, then emerge a short time later with the net full of river herring. He was charged with using a prohibited fishing method – netting within 100 yards of a spillway – and fined $91.

· Two Maryland men – Thomas M. Lagana, 24, of Crapo, and Daniel W. Malone, 30, of Princess Anne, were charged with shooting carp with bow and arrow in Broad Creek without having fishing licenses. Each was fined $61.50. (Fishing licenses are required in all Delaware waters, and for any kind of fishing in them.)

· Eric J. Farmer, 55, of Millsboro was charged with tending over the recreational limit of crab pots and operating a motor vessel without wearing a life jacket. He was fined $61.50 for each offense. Nearly a bushel of illegally-taken crabs were documented as evidence, then released back into the water.

· Dean W. Miller, 49, of Middletown, and Lucious B. Culbreth, 54, of Wilmington, were charged with possession of undersized striped bass at the Augustine Boat Ramp. Both men had fish shy of the 28-inch legal length for Delaware, Miller with a 24-inch striper in his boat, and Culbreth a 15-inch fish in a plastic bag hidden near where he fished from shore. Both were charged with one count of undersized striped bass or rockfish and fined $150.

When fishing for striped bass, anglers in Delaware are also required to use circle hooks in spawning areas, and reminded by Fish & Wildlife Enforcement that those areas are limited to catch-and-release fishing from April 1 to May 31. Striper spawning areas include the Nanticoke River and its tributaries, the Delaware River and its tributaries to the north of a line extending due east beginning at and including the south jetty at the mouth of the C&D Canal, and the C&D Canal and its tributaries.

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