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 Pages Categorized With: "Fish and Wildlife"

Delaware Wildlife Action Plan

After over eight years of implementing the 2015 Delaware Wildlife Action Plan, the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife has begun a comprehensive review and revision of the Plan to ensure the document remains up to date with the best available science and continues to serve the needs of Delaware’s wildlife. The


Division of Fish and Wildlife

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on approximately 68,000 acres of public land. The division oversees wildlife resource conservation and control of mosquito populations and offers hunter, boating and aquatic education programs. It provides licenses


American Oystercatchers

American oystercatchers are black and white shorebirds with bright orange beaks that feed and nest on the beach. The Beach-Nesting Bird Program monitors the population and productivity of American oystercatchers in Delaware. An American oystercatcher incubating a nest. (Photo: Henrietta Bellman) These birds begin arriving in Delaware in March, start


Least Terns

Least terns are the smallest species of tern in North America, with an orange-yellow beak and mask-like black markings on the head. The Beach-Nesting Bird Program monitors the population and productivity of least terns in Delaware. A male and female least tern conducting a courtship ritual. The male presents the female with


Beach-Nesting Birds

Dwindling shorebird populations have landed several species on Delaware’s Endangered Species List. The DNREC Beach-Nesting Bird Program monitors the endangered breeding shorebirds, provides habitat protection, and provides information to the public about beach-nesting species. The Beach-Nesting Bird Program primarily focuses on three species — Piping Plovers, American Oystercatchers and Least


Educational Programs for Grades K Through 12

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife operates two educational centers that provide free programs and resources to schools and other educational groups. The Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC) and DuPont Nature Center (DNC) offer a variety of programming focused on aquatic species and other environmental education topics, from microorganisms found in


Bands and Special Markers on Migratory Gamebirds

Delaware hunters may find GPS transmitters, bands or other human-created additions on migratory gamebirds they encounter during hunting seasons. Harvesting such gamebirds is legal, but hunters should report what they find to state and federal biologists. Migratory gamebird hunters should be aware of specially marked ducks, geese and


Public Comment Opportunity: Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control invites public comment on a proposed Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan for Delaware. The department will take comments on the proposed plan through Nov. 15, 2023.
Public Comment Draft: Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan



Mosquito Control

DNREC’s Mosquito Control Section provides mosquito control services throughout Delaware to maintain quality of life and protect public health by reducing the possibility of mosquito-borne illnesses.
For help with nuisance mosquitoes where you live, call one of our field offices: The Northern Delaware Office, 302-836-2555, serving New Castle County


Comment Form: Wildlife Area Land Replacement

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife is asking for public comment on an Environmental Assessment of a proposal to replace a 23-acre portion of the Honig parcel in the Little Creek Wildlife Area with a 30-acre portion of the Vines parcel at Eagles Nest Wildlife Area to meet the purposes of a federal grant used to


Hunter Harvest Survey

This page holds the annual Hunter Harvest Survey from the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife. The survey helps state biologists track hunter harvest and activity for game species in Delaware.

Contact Us

DNREC Hunter Surveys 302-735-3600



Artificial Reef Guide Requests

DNREC publishes the Delaware Reef Guide to provide information about the state’s artificial reef sites. The Guide is available for download in PDF format. A limited number of printed copies are available as well. Use the request form below to request a copy by mail. Please include your


Bald Eagle Nesting Survey

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife plans an aerial survey of bald eagle nesting sites during the late winter of 2023. You can help biologists plan for this survey by reporting bald eagle nests to the state.
Report a Bald Eagle Nest


Wildlife Viewing in Delaware’s State Wildlife Areas

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) provides numerous outdoor recreation opportunities on public lands, including elevated wildlife-viewing structures on several state wildlife areas managed by the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife.
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Fish and Wildlife Natural Resources Police Recruitment

This page includes information and requirements for applicants for positions with the Fish and Wildlife unit of the DNREC Natural Resources Police. Eligibility Requirements The applicant must: Be at least 20 and a half years oldCompleted of an academy approved by the Delaware Council on Police


Delaware Whitetail Deer Records

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife maintains records of the top hunter-taken whitetail deer in Delaware, using the Boone and Crockett scoring system. The records include whitetails taken in any year.
State Deer Rankings All-Time Typical Whitetail Deer Non-Typical


Deer Stands or Ground Blinds on State Wildlife Areas

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife requires hunters to register temporary deer stands or ground blinds they place on state wildlife areas.

Contact Us

DNREC Wildlife Section 302-739-9912
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2021 AREC Photo Contest Gallery

This page contains photographs submitted for the first annual Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC) nature photography contest in 2021, including the winning submissions. The contest was open to photographers of all ages. Prizes were awarded in three categories (birds, nature, and people enjoying nature) and in three age groups (children, teens and adults). All


Delaware Hunters Against Hunger

Delaware’s deer hunters share part of their harvest each year with Delawareans in need. They provide thousands of pounds of venison through the Delaware Hunters Against Hunger program. Delivering boxes of venison to a food distribution hub. All donated deer are processed into ground venison, free of charge. The


Youth Fishing Tournament Registration

The Delaware Youth Fishing Tournament is free and open to all anglers aged 4 to 15, but registration is required. Registration for this event is now closed. The 2022 Tournament will be held on Saturday, June 4. from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., rain or shine. Awards will be presented at 1:30 p.m.


Wildlife Mortality Survey

If you see sick wildlife, or dead wildlife where it looks like the cause of death is an illness, please report it to the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife. If you see five or more sick or dead wild animals at the same location, please also call division staff at 302-735-3600


Reporting Sick or Dead Wildlife

Wildlife disease surveillance, prevention, and control are crucial factors for safeguarding Delaware’s citizens, wildlife, pets, and livestock. Citizen reports help state biologists monitor wildlife populations in Delaware. If you see


Reporting Tick Interactions

Knowing what species of tick has attached to you, a family member, or a pet will help determine whether you may be at risk for a tick-borne disease.
Note: The state of Delaware does not provide tick pathogen testing services.
Ticks can carry disease and


Reporting Fish Kills

A fish kill is a sudden, unexpected die-off of fish in a specific location. It is important to report fish kills right away. Evidence dissipates quickly; delays can make it harder to determine the cause.
Signs of a Fish Kill: Dead


Volunteer With the Piping Plover Program

To ensure continued breeding success, the DNREC Piping Plover Program depends on volunteers to help inform the public about the breeding progress of the plovers and the importance of staying out of closed areas.

Contact Us

Shorebird Project Staff 302-735-3600



Volunteer With the Delaware Kestrel Partnership

The kestrel monitoring program relies on community scientist volunteers who dedicate time from March through July each year to help monitor kestrel boxes across the state. This page provides information on the volunteer program and a form to register to join the effort.
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American Kestrel Monitoring and Management

American kestrel populations in Delaware have declined. Once commonly seen perched along telephone wires and fence posts, this falcon is now a rare sight across our state. The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife works to study and manage the state’s population of American kestrels.
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COVID Relief Funding for Saltwater Fishery-Related Businesses

Delaware has received nearly $3 million in relief funding from the federal government to distribute to eligible saltwater fishery-related businesses affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Applications for relief funds were accepted through March 17, 2022.

Contact Us

DNREC Fisheries


Youth Waterfowl Hunting Day

Two separate, one-day, special youth waterfowl hunting days are open on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, and Saturday Feb. 3, 2024, for hunters ages 10 through 15. Normal daily waterfowl bag limits and hunting regulations apply, including a limit of 25 snow geese, 2 Canada geese, and 1 brant.


Shorebird Volunteer Form

This page is a volunteer registration form for those interested in volunteering to help with the spring field season of the Delaware Shorebird Project. Participants must be at least 18 years of age to volunteer with the Shorebird Project. Commitment Volunteers should plan on committing to


Operation Game Theft Report Form

Use this form to report wildlife crime through DNREC’s Operation Game Theft. Information supplied in this form is strictly confidential and will not be released to the public. Use this form to report a crime that is not in progress. If you need to report a wildlife crime in progress,


Migratory Bird Hunting

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife provides opportunities for migratory bird hunting on state wildlife areas. The following is a summary of those opportunities and the procedures and rules that apply. (Updated Aug. 21, 2023)
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Ticks and Domestic Animals and Wildlife

It’s not just humans who can be affected by ticks. Tick-caused diseases and related problems also affect many wildlife species and domestic animals. Dogs Dogs are susceptible to both Lyme disease and


Report Atlantic Sturgeon

You can help DNREC research and manage the local population of Atlantic sturgeon, a rare and endangered fish. Simply use our reporting form to let us know of any interactions you have with this fish.
Submit a Report


Protecting Yourself from Ticks

Ticks live in several different habitat types and can be found throughout Delaware in forests, meadows and wetlands. They are also found in yards and residential areas. Ticks are active year-round if temperatures are above freezing.


Tick Management

There are a few simple measures you can take to help keep you safe from ticks around the home. In the Yard Remove leaf litter and invasive plants. This helps to eliminate


Ticks of Delaware

There are five species of tick commonly found in Delaware. Identifying which tick has bitten you can help you take steps to protect yourself. There are also a handful of arthropods that are sometimes mistaken for ticks.


Tick Program

DNREC’s tick program conducts year-round, statewide active and passive surveillance for ticks and tick-borne pathogens. Knowing when and where different tick species occur in the state, and whether or not they’re infected with pathogens such as the agent of Lyme disease, helps protect public health.
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Tick-Associated Diseases in Delaware

While Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne infection in Delaware, there are other tick-associated diseases to be aware of in case you suffer a tick bite.
Note: The state of Delaware does not provide tick pathogen testing services.



2022 AREC Photo Contest Gallery

This page contains photographs submitted for the 2022 Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC) nature photography contest. All photos were taken in the Woodland Beach Wildlife Area. The contest was open to photographers of all ages through Sep. 29, 2022. In the Nature category, the winner was “Windy Morning Waves,” by Tracy Thompkins,


AREC Nature Photo Contest

DNREC’s Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC) nature photography contest is now open for submissions from photographers and nature lovers. All entries must be photos taken in the Tony Florio Woodland Beach Wildlife Area.

Contact Us

Pearlie Franklin Aquatic Resources


Nature Photo Contest Entry and Release Form

This page includes the Official Rules and an online Entry and Release Form for the DNREC Aquatic Resources Education Center Nature Photography contest. Official Rules Deadline for Entry The photo submission and the completed Entry and Release Form(s) must be submitted by Thursday, Sept. 29, 2023 at 4 p.m.


Delaware Marina Pumpout Stations

A list of Delaware Marina Pumpout Stations for use by boaters in Delaware waters. Summit North Marina3000 Summit Harbor PlaceBear, DE 19701302-836-1800Latitude (N): 39.54790Longitude (W): -75.70270 Delaware City Marina302 Canal StreetDelaware City, DE 19706302-832-4172Latitude (N): 39.57318Longitude (W): -75.59027 Carey’s DieselFront


Horseshoe Crabs, Shorebirds and the Delaware Bay

You can witness the amazing annual convergence of spawning horseshoe crabs and migratory shorebirds along the Delaware Bayshore every spring. DNREC’s DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor is one of the best places to observe this wonder of nature. The Horseshoe Crabs
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Mosquito Control Spraying Calendar

The DNREC Mosquito Control Section provides multiple communication channels to share information about planned mosquito control spraying in Delaware. These include the mosquito control spraying calendar (below), the online Spray Zone Map and the Spray Zone Notification System. https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?src=glasgowmosquito%40gmail.com&ctz=America%2FNew_York


Snow Goose Conservation Order

The Snow Goose Conservation Order is a separate season only for snow geese that occurs when Delaware’s regular waterfowl hunting seasons are closed. Liberal harvest methods are allowed during the Conservation Order to help reduce the large snow goose population that is damaging its Arctic nesting grounds, as well as wetlands and agricultural lands on


Annual Turkey Harvest Data

The table below shows the numbers of wild turkeys harvested each year during annual Delaware wild turkey hunting seasons, from 1991 to the present.
Year Adult Juvenile Unk. Total 1991


Wild Turkey Surveys

Since 2010, the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife has used an annual, volunteer-based survey to record observations of wild turkeys across the state during the months of July and August. The survey generates an index of annual turkey productivity and recruitment (the ratio of young birds per adult females).


Turkey Hunting Check Stations

All turkeys harvested during Delaware’s wild turkey hunting season must be checked at an authorized turkey check station by 2:30 p.m. on the day the bird is harvested. The list of check stations is subject to change without notice. Please check back before the season begins for any changes. Check station hours


Wild Turkey Hunting

The 2024 spring wild turkey hunting season will run from April 13 through May 11, 2024. A special one-day hunt for youth and non-ambulatory hunters is set for April 6, 2024.
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