Dover, DE – Since 2009, recreational anglers fishing Delaware waters have been required to call or go online annually to participate in Delaware’s fishing registry by obtaining a Delaware Fisherman Information Network (F.I.N.) number. As of Friday, April 15, the required F.I.N. number will be generated automatically on all individual fishing licenses sold through Delaware’s electronic licensing systems.
“Anglers have asked for this change, the advisory council has recommended it, and we are very happy to announce that we will now be able to provide our recreational fishermen with a F.I.N. number and eliminate the extra steps,” said Fisheries Administrator Craig Shirey.
As before, license customers will be asked to provide basic information and complete the five-question F.I.N. survey. After the license sale is completed, the F.I.N. number will be printed on the lower left hand side of the back tag that comes with the individual license. If an angler has already received their F.I.N. number prior to purchasing a license, they will receive a new F.I.N. number with their new license that will replace any previously issued number. Anglers should copy the F.I.N. number from the back tag onto the license. This number must be in the angler’s possession while actively fishing.
The new system does not apply to anglers who do not purchase an individual fishing license. The three exceptions are: exempt anglers, non-resident boat fishing license holders who do not have an individual license, and individuals fishing on licensed boats who do not have an individual license. These anglers will still have to visit www.delaware-fin.com or call 800-432-9228 toll-free to obtain a F.I.N. number.
Delaware’s F.I.N. registry was established so that the state could provide information to the National Marine Fisheries Service for its new federal registry. Anglers in states without an approved state registry are required to register directly with the NMFS registry, which began charging fees this year. Anglers who join the Delaware registry are added to the federal registry without paying any fees.
Purchase of a fishing license is required for anglers age 16 and older who are fishing, crabbing or clamming in all Delaware waters, including both tidal and non-tidal areas. Delaware residents age 65 and older are not required to purchase a license. A resident fishing license costs $8.50 and a non-resident license costs $20 per year.
More information on fishing licensing in Delaware, including where to purchase, is available at www.fw.delaware.gov/Fisheries. For additional information, please contact the Division of Fish and Wildlife, Fisheries Section, at 302-739-9914.