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Surf fishing permits and state park passes have gone on sale


Delaware Surf Fishing Permits and annual state park passes are on sale.

Annual passes and surf fishing permits can be purchased at any state park office and DNREC’s Dover campus Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. They can also be purchased online.

Those purchased online take an estimated two to three weeks to be delivered.

This is the second year of the daily advanced drive-on reservation program for peak days during the summer.

To fish on peak weekends and holidays from Memorial Day to Labor Day, you must secure a reservation for one of the seven locations surf fishing is permitted.

Tuesday was the first day for sales, and Ray Bivens – director of Delaware State Parks – says it’s not the rush on day one like it used to be.

"The kind of pressures off at where we were two or three years ago where they went on sale until they were gone. That is no longer the case. People can get one at any point that people do not want to participate in the reservation system and don't want to fish on weekends during the summer there's also an off-peak pass," said Bivens.

Meanwhile, DNREC’s annual auction of low-digit surf fishing license plates started last week, and continues through December 7th.

"There's 15 different plates that are for sale. You still would need a permit to use one of those plates. Every year we do this sale all that money stays to help benefit Delaware State Parks which is great,” said Bivens. “You own the plate, and you can transfer or sell it to someone else. You can leave it to a family member whatever you choose to do."

The minimum bid for a low-digit surf fishing plate is $250. By state law, surf-fishing tags numbered 1 through 200 are limited to vehicles registered in Delaware.

The annual pass costs $35 for Delaware residents and $70 for non-residents. Those ages 62 and older receive a discounted rate of $18 for residents and $35 for non-residents. A $65 lifetime pass is available for Delawareans 65 and older, the Delaware Military Pass is available for $17.50, and an Assistance Program Pass is available for $10.

The surf fishing permit fee for Delaware residents is $90 and $180 for out-of-state residents. Delaware residents ages 62 and older will receive a discounted rate of $80. The off-peak permit fee for Delaware residents is $70, while the fee for out-of-state residents is $140. For off-peak permits, Delaware residents 62 and older will get a discounted rate of $60.

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.