The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) will offer a free training workshop on small game hunting on Sunday, November 17, from 9 AM to 1 PM at Camp E-Hun-Tee in Exeter. The workshop will provide an overview of small game species and their habitats, rules and regulations, firearm safety, and proper field methods for small game hunting.
Following the workshop, participants will have an opportunity to take part in a mentored hunt. A current RI hunting license is required for participation in the mentored hunt, and participants must provide their own firearm equipment. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. To register, contact Scott Travers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Rhode Island, the hunting season for small game species including pheasant, cottontail rabbit, gray squirrel, bobwhite quail, and red and gray fox runs from October to February. The season for woodcock is open through December 2 and the second portion of the mourning dove season is open through December 1.
The season for hunting raccoon is open now through Saturday, February 29, 2020. The season for coyote on state land is open now through Saturday, February 29, 2020, and during the spring turkey season: Thursday, April 30, through Sunday, May 24, 2020, provided the hunter has a valid spring turkey permit in their possession. There is no closed season for coyote on private land. More information including daily bag, possession limits, and fluorescent orange requirements is available in the 2019-2020 Hunting & Trapping Guide, which is available online and at license vendors.
Small game, upland game bird, and coyote hunters are reminded that they are required to wear a minimum of 200 square inches of fluorescent orange beginning October 19 and 500 square inches during the shotgun deer seasons. Fall turkey hunters are required to wear 200 square inches of fluorescent orange while traveling during the fall turkey season. All other users of state management areas and designated undeveloped state parks are required to wear a minimum of 200 square inches of fluorescent orange beginning on the second Saturday in September through the last day in February, except during the shotgun deer seasons in December when a minimum of 500 square inches is required.
Hunter education is offered as part of the DEM Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Hunter Education Program. Safety training is required by law in Rhode Island for beginning hunters. To date, more than 40,000 people have completed a hunter safety course in Rhode Island, helping to reduce related accidents in the state and elsewhere. Here is a schedule of hunter educational offerings now available.
Hunting has a long tradition in Rhode Island, supporting family customs, connecting people with nature, and attracting tourism to the state. Hunters and anglers purchase around 70,000 licenses, permits, stamps, and tags each year and contribute more than $235 million to Rhode Island’s economy. Revenue generated from license and permit sales support Rhode Island fish and wildlife conservation programs. A critical source of funding, these monies are leveraged to match federal Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program dollars that support outdoor recreational opportunities for fishing, hunting, and boating in Rhode Island.
More information about Rhode Island’s hunting and fishing licensing system is available at www.dem.ri.gov/huntfish. The site also acts as a portal to help plan adventures that make the most of Rhode Island’s great outdoors. The site links to information on hunting and fishing opportunities, trails, and natural areas through a variety of maps, as well as certification information for hunter safety and boating safety.