Will Delaware Change The 2018 Summer Flounder Size Limit
Delaware is in the process of changing the flounder size limit, but will it remain all year? Right now the summer flounder limit is seventeen inches and four fish per angler, per day. We don’t have a season for flounder like the northern states. Delaware is in the process of changing our summer flounder size limit to sixteen and a half inches. We will keep the four fish a day limit per angler and no season. Due to the process of this change, Delaware could change to the new limit but have to revert back to the old limit.
The flounder fishery is in decline according to the latest reports, even with this change we will probably go back to seventeen inches in 2019.
The process for changing a fish size limit in Delaware can be a long one due to the legislation needed and the timing. If legislators are not in session when the regulation needs to be voted on so it can be enacted for the beginning of a specific season or timing needed for say the coming spring flounder fishing. The DNREC Secretary can expedite that process. This is known as the Emergency Regulation Process and it will be used to change the flounder size limit for the upcoming season. The Delaware state fishing guide will also be changed online once this is official. Right now it has seventeen inches listed in the published version that has already been distributed.
Once the actual legislation is ready for the summer flounder size limit change, then there will be a public comment period. The standard regulatory process includes a public hearing and a 45 day public comment period. With the process of the law, we could see the summer flounder season stay as it is now, or go back to seventeen inches. That could happen if this change is not passed by legislation. That doesn’t look like the case but it can happen. Anything is possible.
Maryland just changed their summer flounder limit the other day to 16.5 inches. Virginia is now at 16.5inches, soon all of Delmarva will have the same fish size limits. Which is good when you are transporting fish across state lines. Always be sure to check state creel limits when you are transporting your catch. A lot us like to travel and fish. Virginia and Maryland are not that far away and you can fish all three states in one day. We did that once with some guys from England on a mission for Fish the Fifty, but that is another story.