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Blacktip Shark

Duane Raver, Jr.
January 1 to May 14

July 16 to December 31

All Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) not retained must be immediately released to ensure the maximum probability of survival, without removing the fish from the water.

*Special permit required - All private vessel owners/operators recreationally fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Shark Species for personal use in Federal waters of the Atlantic Ocean (3 to 200 miles off shore) must obtain an Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Angling Permit.

Consult or call toll free (888) 872-8862 for specific information and permits.
Size Limit
54 inch minimum (measured from the tip of the snout to the fork of the tail)
Daily Limit / Person
Boat anglers - only 1 shark of any species per vessel, except 1 additional Bonnethead and 1 additional Atlantic Sharpnose per angler onboard vessels.

Shore anglers - only 1 shark of any species per angler, except 1 additional Bonnethead and one additional Atlantic Sharpnose per shore angler.
Delaware Range
Atlantic Ocean
Abundance in Delaware Waters
General Habitat and Food Preferences
The Blacktip Shark is an active, fast-swimming shark often seen at the surface of nearshore and offshore waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

They feed primarily on fishes but also eat small sharks, rays, skates, squids, crabs, octopi, and lobsters.
General Description
Blacktip Sharks are dark gray, ashy blue or dusky bronze in color on the back, with a yellowish-white belly.

The black tips found on the fins and lower tail lobe are very apparent.
Did You Know?
Blacktip Sharks are sometimes spotted above the water. They leap above the surface, rotate several times, and splash down on their backs.
Common Fishing Lures and Baits
Blacktip Sharks are normally considered a timid shark, but when food is present, they go wild. They will feast on any kind of bait, making them a favorite among anglers. Live bait, dead bait, lures, and even flies will work with these eating machines.

To draw sharks in, chumming is almost a necessity.
Typical Sizes Caught
In general, Blacktip Sharks average around 40 pounds.
Citation Minimum Lengths/Weights
Live Release Award
Adult: 66 inches minimum
Youth (age 15 and under): 56 inches minimum

Sport Fishing Tournament Award
Adult: 100 pounds minimum
Youth (age 15 and under): 75 pounds minimum

Blacktip Sharks are eligible for the Delaware Sport Fishing Tournament and Live Release "Shark" awards, but not currently eligible for an individual species award.
Delaware State Record
825 pounds
Brent Thomas

Blacktip Sharks are eligible for the general "Shark" record, but due to their smaller size, catching one large enough to qualify is unlikely.

Blacktip Sharks are not currently eligible for an individual Delaware record.