This week's edition of "Traplines on Cypress Creek" discusses the affordable fees to become a hunter in The First State.


Obviously my archery practice times have been wiped out because of my ax trick, but for those of you not on crutches, this is certainly the time to work up a daily regimen of practice. Bow season is 42 days away.

Many of you know there’s been some heavy political wheeling and dealing going on within DNREC. Most of it is to the degree that only a professional politician could stomach the gerrymandering going on. It wouldn’t be nearly as bad if the changes would be to improve the system, but it’s simply become a résumé builder for people with education and no experience.

Several years ago, I noted that we were in the Golden Age of interaction between the division and the hunters/fishermen. I doubt many of us will be able to hold our nose long enough to see the return of that time. Quietly we’ve been taken over by the “greenies” to the degree that we’re transplanting them here from California instead of using our own homegrown experts who have served us long and faithfully. Some decry my slant on politics but this is exactly what happens when you have the best politicians money can buy. As the NRA advertisement says, you may not be thinking about them, but they’re always thinking about you.

In Delaware, the hunters and fisherman subsidize their sports like no other. (Licenses had remained the same for over 20 years yet the costs of doing business had escalated constantly.) When the costs, including the federal refunds from Pittman-Robertson, were being outstripped, hunters and fisherman, as always, paid their own way. So today, for a paltry $25, any resident between the ages of 16 and 64 can hunt all the legal wildlife living within the state. Included in this are tags for two antlerless deer and two doe deer. If you’d like to partake in the fine quality animals of our Small Wonder, you can buy a “quality buck tag” for an extra $10 and get an additional tag for a “hunter’s choice” deer.

The average cost of resident hunting licenses in the Northeast is $36.67 with the average across the nation is $48,86. Even with the quality buck tags, we’ve still beat the local average by $1.67.