Hooks to drop on downstate trout season on March 2

DOVER — The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Division of Fish and Wildlife announced Friday that the state’s spring 2019 downstate trout season will begin Saturday, March 2, with the opening of two downstate ponds stocked with rainbow trout – provided that pond ice conditions do not prevent stocking or fishing.

Both Tidbury Pond near Dover in Kent County and Newton Pond near Greenwood in Sussex County will open for trout fishing on March 2 beginning at 7 a.m.

Each pond will be stocked with more than 300 pounds of 12- to 13-inch rainbow trout before opening day, with a second stocking in March. Trophy-sized trout weighing 2 pounds or more will be included in the stocking as an added attraction for trout anglers.

Trout anglers planning to fish the waters of Tidbury and Newton ponds should note the following rules and regulations:

• A Delaware fishing license is required for most anglers fishing for trout.

• A trout stamp is required to fish these ponds from the first Saturday in March through April 1, unless otherwise exempted by law. 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.

• 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 today through Friday, March 1.

This preseason 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.

Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building at 89 Kings Highway in Dover and by license agents statewide.

To find a participating agent, or to pu rchase a license online, visit Delaware Licenses online. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.

All proceeds from the purchase of Delaware trout stamps are used to help purchase next year’s trout for stocking.

The popular fishery also is supported by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration funds generated from anglers purchasing fishing equipment.

For more information, click Delaware Trout Season. For general information on fishing in Delaware, search for the 2019 Delaware Fishing Guide online.

The guide also is available in printed form at DNREC’s Dover licensing desk and from license agents throughout the state.

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