Delaware’s Freshwater Trout Program is a self-supporting fishery supported, in part, by funds derived from the state’s trout stamp program. Anglers fishing for trout have been required to purchase a trout stamp since 1955. Today, fees paid by anglers for trout stamps provide the Division with an average of $50,000 annually to purchase trout from commercial hatcheries.
In 1979, the Division began an annual trout stamp art competition. Artists submit their entries to the Division and a panel of judges is convened to select the winning artwork that will become Delaware’s trout stamp for the following year. A prize of $250 is awarded to the winning artist.
The next Trout Stamp Art Contest will take place in the spring of 2022. Judging dates will be set based on the progress of Delaware’s COVID-19 response and the need to protect public health. When dates are set, DNREC will notify artists and post the dates here.
The winning artist for the 2022 Trout Stamp Contest was George Bradford of Georgetown, Delaware.
Collectors and Buyers:
Past Delaware trout stamps are available for sale. Use the Trout Stamp Order Form.
Residents 16 to 64 years of age are required to have a Delaware Trout Stamp, which costs $4.20. Residents ages 12 through 15 years old are required to have a Young Angler Trout Stamp, which costs $2.10. Non-residents 12 years of age and older are required to have a Non-Resident Trout Stamp, which costs $6.20.
Note: Because of the public health restrictions of the coronavirus period, sales at the DNREC offices are suspended.
Every year in April, the Division of Fish and Wildlife stocks rainbow, brown and occasionally brook, tiger and golden rainbow trout in selected New Castle County streams and in one pond each in Kent and Sussex counties. A limited stocking also occurs in the fall at White Clay Creek.
Because Delaware stream temperatures are marginal at best for trout survival in the summer, and no reproduction has been noted, stocked fish are meant to be taken, not caught and re-released.
For more information on Delaware trout stamps, please contact the Division of Fish and& Wildlife Licensing Section, at 302-739-9918 or by email, at DNREC_StampPrograms@delaware.gov.
Did you know, there’s also a Delaware Waterfowl (Duck) Stamp Contest?