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Delaware General AssemblyDelaware RegulationsMonthly Register of RegulationsFebruary 2018

Regulatory Flexibility Act Form

Authenticated PDF Version

7 DE Admin. Code 3900
7 DE Admin. Code 3900 Wildlife
7 DE Admin. Code 3900 Wildlife is being proposed for amendment to comply with the decision of the Delaware Supreme Court in Bridgeville R&P Club v. DNREC (Dec. 7, 2017) that invalidated portions of the existing regulations governing firearms. The emergency regulations promulgated on December 26, 2017 will be superseded by these regulations.
These regulations are issued by the Secretary pursuant to the power conveyed by the General Assembly for DNREC to promulgate necessary regulations to protect wildlife, 7 Del.C. §103, and to "[e]stablish and promulgate such rules and regulations governing the administration and operation of the Department as may be deemed necessary by the Secretary and which are not inconsistent with the laws of this State". 29 Del.C. §8003(7).
The hearing record on the proposed changes to 7 DE Admin. Code 3900 Wildlife will open February 1, 2018 and public comments will be accepted in accordance with 29 Del.C. §10118. Individuals may submit written comments regarding the proposed changes via e-mail to or via the USPS to Lisa Vest, Hearing Officer, DNREC, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901 (302) 739-9042. A public hearing on the proposed amendment will be held on March 12, 2018 beginning at 6:00 pm in the DNREC Auditorium, located at the Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.
Administered by the Division shall mean owned, leased or licensed by the Division.
Antlered Deer shall mean any deer with one or more antlers three inches long or longer, measured from the base of the antler where it joins the skull to the tip of the antler following any curve of the antler.
Antlerless Deer shall mean any deer that has no antlers or antlers less than three inches in length.
Bait shall mean any nontoxic food material, compound or mixture of ingredients which wildlife is able to consume.
Baited Field shall include any farm field, woodland, marsh, water body or other tract of land where minerals, grain, fruit, crop or other nontoxic compounds have been placed to attract wildlife to be hunted.
Black Powder shall mean a manufacturer’s approved muzzleloading propellant.
Cable Restraintformerly referred to as “snare”, shall be considered a trapping device made of stranded steel cable with a minimum diameter of 5/64 inches. Cable restraints must be equipped with a relaxing-type lock. The cable may not exceed 7 feet in length from the anchor point to the relaxing lock and must be equipped with at least one swivel device, which allows for 360° rotation, between the loop and the anchor. The cable restraint must have stops affixed to the cable to ensure that the cable that makes up the loop may not have a circumference greater than 38 inches when fully open, or a circumference less than 6 ¼ inches when fully closed. Cable restraints with a maximum loop circumference of 12 ½ inches do not require cable stops. Cable restraints must be maintained in good condition so that all components operate properly.
Deer” shall mean white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) and/or Sika deer (Cervus nippon).
Director shall mean the Director or Acting Director of the Division.
Division shall mean the Division of Fish and Wildlife of the Department.
Established Blind shall mean a structure or pit constructed for the purpose of hunting migratory waterfowl by a landowner on his or her property or by another person with the permission of the landowner or the landowner’s duly authorized agent.
Established Road shall mean a road maintained for vehicular use by the Division and designated for such use by the Division on current wildlife area maps.
Foothold Trap” formerly referred to as “leghold trap”, shall refer to a type of trap with a mechanism that is designed to catch and hold a mammal by one of its feet or legs.
Jaw Spread” shall mean the distance between the inside of both jaws, when measured across the trap jaws on a line perpendicular to a line drawn through the jaw pivot points when the trap is in the set position.
Liberated Game shall mean cottontail rabbits and game birds, including bobwhite quail, mallard duck, chukar and pheasant released pursuant to § 568 of Title 7.
Loaded Muzzle-Loading Rifle shall mean the powder and ball, bullet or shot is loaded in the bore. A muzzle-loading rifle shall not be considered loaded if the cap, primer, or priming powder (in a flintlock) is removed and:
Lure shall mean any mixture of ingredients, element or compound that attract wildlife, but the wildlife is unlikely to consume.
Longbow shall mean a straight limb, reflex, recurve or compound bow. All crossbows or variations thereof and mechanical holding and releasing devices are expressly excluded from the definition.
Nongame Wildlife shall mean any native wildlife, including rare and endangered species, which are not commonly trapped, killed, captured or consumed, either for sport or profit.
Possession shall mean either actual or constructive possession of or any control over the object referred to.
Quality Buck shall mean an antlered deer with an outside antler spread of at least 15 inches. This measurement is taken across the outside of the main beams at their widest point; this measurement’s path must be perpendicular to the center line of the skull and parallel to the top of the skull plate.
Refuge shall mean an area of land, whether in public or private ownership, designated by the Department as a refuge. Land shall only be designated with the permission of the landowner and if such designation is thought to be in the best interest of the conservation of wildlife. Refuges shall normally be closed at all times to all forms of hunting, except as permitted by the Director in writing for wildlife management purposes.
Relaxing Lock” shall mean a device installed on a cable restraint that allows the loop to release constriction pressure on the captured animal when the cable is not taut and the animal stops pulling.
Roadway shall mean any road, lane or street, including associated right-of-ways, maintained by this State or any political subdivision of this State.
Season shall mean that period of time during which a designated species of wildlife may be lawfully hunted or a designated species of fish may be lawfully fished.
Vehicle shall include any means in or by which someone travels or something is carried or conveyed or a means of conveyance or transport, whether or not propelled by its own power.
Waterline” shall refer to beneath the surface of the water or below the mean high tide line in an area ordinarily subject to the rise and fall of the tide.
Wildlife shall mean any member of the animal kingdom, including without limitation, any amphibian, arthropod, bird, mammal or reptile.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
2.1.1 Crossbows may be used during all deer seasons;
2.4.1 Notwithstanding statutes § 703 and 788 of Title 7, it shall be unlawful for any person to set a foothold trap at any time in this State, except from December 1 through March 20. The use of toothed or serrated jawed traps is prohibited. All foothold traps set above the waterline must have padded, laminated or offset jaws, with the exception being that coil-spring traps with a jaw spread of 4 inches or less and long-spring traps with a jaw spread of 4 ½ inches or less do not need to be padded, laminated or have offset jaws.
2.8.1 Red foxes may be killed or trapped in accordance with § 788 of Title 7 and the regulations found within this Section with the following: longbow and crossbow, shotgun, rimfire rifle or centerfire rifle up to .25 caliber, or a muzzle-loading rifle, foothold trap, cable restraint, or box trap.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
3.5 Mute Swans (Cygnus olor)
3.5.2 It shall be unlawful to possess, buy, sell, barter, trade, or transfer any live mute swan or their eggs to or from another person unless permitted by the Director of the Division of Fish and Wildlife.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
4.9.3 Male Pheasant Limit. It shall be unlawful for any person to hunt or possess more than two (2) male pheasants in any one day during the pheasant season, except as permitted by law.
4.11.2 Limit. It shall be unlawful for any person to take more than four (4) rabbits in any one day.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
It shall be unlawful for any person, other than authorized representatives of the Division, to release or possess Meleagris gallopavo (wild turkey) in Delaware without a permit from the Division. The prohibition to possess and/or release Meleagris gallopavo shall include both birds taken from the wild and birds bred in captivity.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
7.2 Tagging, Deer Harvest Report Cards, and Registering Harvested Deer.
7.5.5 Crossbow Seasons. Deer may be hunted with crossbows in accordance with statutes and regulations of the State of Delaware governing the hunting of deer: from September 1 (September 2, if September 1 is a Sunday) through the last day of January, provided hunter orange is displayed in accordance with 718 of Title 7 when it also lawful to hunt deer with a gun.
8.1.3 Speed Limit. It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate a vehicle in excess of twenty (20) miles per hour when on lands administered by the Division, unless otherwise authorized by the Director. It shall be unlawful for any person to possess a firearm on lands or waters within areas designated in below administered by the Division from March 1 through August 31, except as authorized by the Director in writing, or as set forth below. The Director may grant written approval on a daily basis for the possession of firearms within areas designated in above, upon written application showing good cause related to self-defense or the defense of family, and due regard for the safety of others within areas designated in above. Active duty and qualified retired law enforcement officers may possess firearms within areas administered by the Division, including areas designated in above, provided that proper and current credentials shall be produced upon request. Delaware residents holding an active current permit to carry a concealed deadly weapon may carry a firearm within areas administered by the Division, including areas designated in above, provided that the permit shall be produced upon request. Residents of other states holding an equivalent permit or license to carry a concealed firearm may be permitted to carry a concealed firearm at the discretion of the Director. Firearms may be carried within areas administered by the Division, outside of areas designated in above, by any person not prohibited by 11 Del.C. §1448. Law enforcement officers may limit the discharge of firearms and the use of other weapons within areas administered by the Division, in order to protect public safety and preserve the peace. Any person possessing a firearm shall display identification upon request, sufficient to enable a law enforcement officer to undertake a background check.
8.8.1 It shall be unlawful to place caches or letterboxes on Division of Fish and Wildlife property without a permit from the Division. Permits may be obtained by submitting a completed permit application to the appropriate Fish and Wildlife Regional Office. The proposed caching location will be specified in the application. The Regional Fish and Wildlife Manager will review and approve or deny the permit request. A permit will be valid for a maximum of one year from the date of issue at which time the geocache or letterbox must be removed or re-permitted. The permitted time frame will be determined by the area manager and be based on the local wildlife species present and the management activities planned for the area. The area manager will be provided the location of the cache or letterbox and may remove it at his or her discretion, with notice to the permit holder, should circumstances warrant. Online geocache and letterbox descriptions, such as those on or must include information about access during hunting seasons and provide a link to Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife Hunting Information.Geocache and letterbox contents must be suitable for all ages. Food, alcohol, tobacco, weapons or other dangerous items, prescription or illegal drugs and adult items are prohibited. From September 1st. through February 15th. of each year and during the spring turkey hunting season, the placement of or searching for geocaches and letterboxes may only occur on Sundays from sunrise to sunset. During the remainder of the year, geocaching and letterbox activities may occur 7 days per week from sunrise to sunset.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
14.3.2 In 2012, and each year thereafter until changed, the Division may allow the taking of a total of 12 birds of prey from the wild in Delaware. Upon request, the Director shall propose a revised annual limit on the number of raptors which may be taken from the wild and shall appear before the Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish to receive input on such limit before its revision or adoption.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
Lizard, Northern Fence (Sceloporus undulatus hyacinthinus)
Racer, Northern Black (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Skink, Five-lined (Eumeces fasciatus)
Snake, Black Rat (Elaphe obsoleta obsoleta)
Snake, Eastern Garter (Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis)
Snake, Eastern Hognose (Heterodon platirhinos)
Snake, Eastern Worm (Carphophis amoenus amoenus)
Snake, Northern Water (Nerodia sipedon sipedon)
Snake, Ringneck (Diadophis punctatus)
Terrapin, Diamondback (Malaclemys terrapin)
Turtle, Common Musk (Sternotherus odoratus)
Turtle, Eastern Box (Terrapene carolina carolina)
Turtle, Eastern Mud (Kinosternon subrubrum subrubrum)
Turtle, Painted (Chrysemys picta)
Turtle, Redbelly (Pseudemys rubriventris)
Turtle, Snapping (Chelydra serpentina)
Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana)
Frog, Green (Rana clamitans melanota)
Frog, New Jersey Chorus (Pseudacris triseriata kalmi)
Frog, Northern Cricket (Acris crepitans crepitans)
Frog, Pickerel (Rana palustris)
Frog, Southern Leopard (Rana utricularia)
Newt, Red-spotted (Notophthalmus viridescens viridescens)
Peeper, Northern Spring (Pseudacris crucifer crucifer)
Salamander, Northern Dusky(Desmognathus fuscus fuscus)
Salamander, Redback (Plethodon cinereus)
Spadefoot, Eastern (Scaphiopus holbrookii holbrookii)
Toad, American (Bufo americanus)
Treefrog, Gray (Hyla versicolor and Hyla chrysoscelis)
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
16.1.1 Pursuant to §601 of Title 7, the importation, transportation, possession or sale of any endangered species of fish or wildlife, or hides or other parts thereof, or the sale or possession with the intent to sell of any article made in whole or in part from the skin, hide or other parts of endangered species of fish or wildlife is prohibited, except under license or permit from the Division.
Grebe, Pied-billedBR (Podilymbus podiceps)
Harrier, NorthernBR (Circus cyaneus)
Hawk, Broad-wingedBR (Buteo platypterus)
BR Breeding population only
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
21.4.1 All persons possessing a Delaware Guide License are required to complete and submit an annual report to the Division within seven days after the close of the season to include the following information which must be readily available for inspection by enforcement officers: full name of each hunter, address of each hunter in the party, hunting license number for each hunter, date, number and species of each animal harvested, location of hunts and the name and license number of the guide.
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
(Penalty Section 7 Del.C. §103(d))
23.2.1 Nutria (Myocastor coypus)
Last Updated: December 31 1969 19:00:00.
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