Delaware surf-fishing permits sold out for 2020

Delaware has capped annual sales of surf-fishing permits at 17,000, and officials announced on June 9 that they had reached that cap and would not sell any more until December.

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control announced on Tuesday that it had reached its cap of 17,000 Delaware surf-fishing permits issued for the calendar year. With the cap figure attained, no more surf tag permits will be issued until December.

In 2019, the Delaware’s Parks & Recreation Advisory Council established a 17,000 cap on annual surf-fishing permit sales. The Division of Parks & Recreation implemented a first-come, first-served cap on the number of permits issued as the most equitable way to serve all beach users, and to manage a limited resource, while also protecting against overcrowding of parks beaches. The plan aligns with DNREC’s priority to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all visitors to Delaware’s state parks system, officials said.

While surf-fishing permit sales have ended for 2020, novice surf anglers are being encouraged to view the “Surf Fishing at Delaware State Parks” informational video that explains surf-fishing rules and regulations in Delaware, what equipment is needed, how to drive on the beach and what to do if a vehicle gets stuck in the sand.

There are no current restrictions for non-vehicle, walk-on fishing for those with a valid Division of Fish & Wildlife fishing license. Walk-on surf anglers should only use pedestrian foot-traffic access points to access surf-fishing beaches and should use caution near drive-on access points.

Surf-fishing permits also serve as a Delaware State Parks Annual Pass that provides access to all 17 state parks. Park user fees, including surf-fishing permit fees, provide 65 percent of the Division of Parks & Recreation’s funding, and are used to operate and maintain the parks.