DOVER – DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife today announced that Delaware’s spring 2018 downstate trout season will begin Saturday, March 3, with the opening of two downstate ponds stocked with rainbow trout, provided pond ice conditions do not prevent stocking or fishing. On that date, Tidbury Pond near Dover in Kent County and Newton Pond near Greenwood in Sussex County will open for trout fishing beginning at 7 a.m.
“As in past years, we plan to stock each of these ponds with more than 300 pounds of 12- to 13-inch rainbow trout before opening day, with a second stocking later in the month,” said Fisheries Administrator John Clark. “We will also include some trophy-sized trout weighing 2 pounds or more as an added attraction for trout anglers.”
Trout anglers planning to fish the waters of Tidbury and Newton ponds will want to note Fish & Wildlife regulatory requirements:
· A trout stamp is required to fish these ponds from the first Saturday in March through April 1, unless otherwise exempted by law.
· Following the opening day 7 a.m. start, trout fishing at these two ponds is permitted one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset, unless otherwise restricted by area rules.
· The daily possession limit is six trout.
· Both ponds are closed to all fishing for 14 days prior to the season opening, with this restriction in effect from Saturday, Feb. 17 until opening day March 3. This pre-season closure enables completion of trout stocking, eliminates incidental trout hooking by anglers fishing for other species, gives stocked trout time to acclimate to their new waters, and improves fair access to the fishery.
A Delaware fishing license is required for most anglers fishing for trout. In addition, most trout anglers also must purchase a Delaware trout stamp. For residents age 16 through 64, a trout stamp costs $4.20. For residents age 12 through 15, a young angler trout stamp costs $2.10. Resident anglers younger than age 12 or age 65 and older are not required to purchase a trout stamp. For non-residents, a trout stamp is required for all anglers age 12 and older and costs $6.20.
Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, and by license agents statewide. To find a participating agent, or to purchase a license online, visit Delaware Licenses. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.
For more information, click Delaware Trout Season. For general information on fishing in Delaware, click 2018 Delaware Fishing Guide. The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk, and from license agents throughout the state.
All proceeds from the purchase of Delaware trout stamps are used to help purchase next year’s fish for stocking. The popular fishery also is supported by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration funds generated from anglers purchasing fishing equipment.