Rhode Island Hunting
Even though Rhode Island is one of the smallest states in the USA, it still offers great hunting opportunities. The eastern part of the state has great game options, with hunters enjoying decent bag limits. Two of the most common games in the state are deer and turkeys. There are also many small game animals to be hunted.
Rhode Island Hunting Regulations
Hunting is well controlled in Rhode Island. Like in most regions of the USA, there are regulations, requirements, and laws that hunters must abide by while trying to take a game in the state. The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is in charge of hunting laws, rules, and regulations, as well as specifying hunting seasons and some licenses.
1. Hunter Safety Requirements
Rhode Island requires that if you are born after the 1st of June 1975, then it is compulsory that you complete a hunter education course before buying any of the Rhode Island hunting licenses that will make you take part in hunting activities without supervision.
However, children that are not yet 16 years old do not have to take a hunter education course and can hunt with the aid of supervision from a licensed hunter.
2. Game Taking Regulation
According to this regulation, the word “taking” when it comes to hunting in Rhode Island refers to, trying to take, chasing, harassing, hunting, killing, or capturing games, wildlife, fishes in any possible way, as long as it results in the possession of the games, wildlife, or fishes.
3. Taking of Game Mammals and Birds
For the taking of game birds and mammals in Rhode Island, the following hunting weapons are legal:
- Recurve bows
- Compound Bows
- Air Guns
You can also make use of prey for bird games like Owls, falcons, and hawks.
4. Prohibited Ways to Take Games and Wildlife in Rhode Island
There are several ways that are strictly prohibited for taking games and wildlife in Rhode Island. Some of these include:
- Using non-expanding military ball ammunition for deer hunting.
- Hunting any game with automatic firearms.
- Using air guns that are not PCP charged to take deer and turkeys.
- Making use of arrows that are explosive or arrows that will inject drugs into games and wildlife.
- Hunting games with artificial lights, chemicals, traps, snares, nets, drugs, live decoys, prerecorded sounds, and calls for games, poison, etc.
- Herding games with vehicles, including aircraft, drones, and boats.
5. Trespassing While Hunting
Even if you have any Rhode Island hunting license, you are under no obligation to trespass into private lands in the state. Before hunting on private land, you must first obtain permission from the management in charge or the landowner. Trespassing with the possession of a firearm or any weapon used for hunting is considered a felony and punishable by either a fine of about $5000 or about 5 years’ prison term or both.
6. Open Carry While Hunting
You can open carry while hunting in the state, and this includes bow hunting. However, it is illegal to use a firearm to take an animal while bow hunting, and the maximum gun per hunter is just one.
7. Hunter Harassment
Rhode Island has laws against hunter harassment. Nobody shall disturb or interfere with hunting activity while in a licensed location. This includes pursuing or disturbing wildlife just to prevent a licensed hunting activity, restricting, disturbing, or harassing a hunter, using any form of stimuli to disturb wildlife, building barriers to restrict movement and access to a property licensed for hunting or trapping of animals, placing oneself in line with a hunter’s live fire, impacting the atmosphere of a privately or publicly owned property used for a legal hunting activity, trespassing on any privately or publicly owned property in the state without permission, etc.
Rhode Island Hunting License Permits and Tags
There are a lot of licenses, permits, and tags available for hunting in Rhode Island. Rhode Island hunting licenses are issued based on age and residency, and they all cost different prices.
1. Rhode Island Residents Hunting License
These are licenses available only to residents of Rhode Island. Some of the licenses available include:
a. Gold Sportsman’s License
This hunting license comes with various game permits for animals like deer, turkeys, waterfowls, lobsters, etc. The license also allows fishing in Rhode Island saltwater and freshwater. There are 2 types of gold sportsman licenses in Rhode Island, the one valid for a year costs $100, while 5 years’ license costs $494.
b. Youth Gold Sportsman’s License
This license carries the same benefit as the normal Gold Sportsman’s License, but it is available for only youth residents that are between the ages of 8 to 15. They must have also completed a hunter safety course. The permit will remain valid until they are 17 years old and it costs $100.
c. Military Gold Sportsman’s License
This license carries the same benefit as the ordinary Gold Sportsman’s License, but it is only available for residents of Rhode Island who are either retired or active members of the military or those who are part of the US armed forces or Rhode Island National Guard. The license costs $20.
2. Rhode Island Non-Residents Hunting License
These are Rhode Island out-of-state hunting licenses for non-residents. Some of the licenses available include:
a. Nonresidents Annual Hunting License
This license will allow Non-Residents to take part in various Rhode Island hunting seasons. However, they may need to purchase a game permit based on the animal season. It costs $151.5.
b. Nonresidents 10 Day Hunting License
This license will allow non-residents to take part in Rhode Island hunting for just a period of 10 days. It costs $46.5.
Rhode Island Hunting Seasons
Rhode Island, like other western parts of the USA, has a great climatic condition and weather that favors hunting. Hunting seasons in the state vary based on the type of game and the firearm or hunting weapon used to take them.
1. Rhode Island Deer Hunting Season
- Archery Season: 15th of September to 31st of December
- Shotgun and Rifle Season (For Public Land): 18th of November to 8th of December
- Shotgun and Rifle Season (For Private Lands): 2nd of November to 31st of December
- Muzzleloader Season (For Private Land): 9th of December to 31st of December
- Muzzleloader Season (For State Lands): 9th of December to 22nd of December
2. Rhode Island Turkey Hunting Season
- Fall Archery Season: 15th of September to 31st of September
- Fall Firearm Season: 3rd of October to 31st of October
3. Rhode Island Small Games Hunting Season
- Cotton Rabbit Season: 19th of October to 31st of December
- Squirrel Season: 1st of September to 31st of December
- Woodchuck Season: 16th of March to 16th of November
- Chukar Partridge Season: 17th of October to 31st of December
- Quail Season: 17th of October to 2nd of November
- Pheasant Season: 17th of October to 31st of December
- Grouse Season: 17th of October to 30th of December
Season dates for each species season may vary based on the different hunting zones in Rhode Island.
Rhode Island Wildlife Game and Fish
Some of the wildlife and games available for hunting in Rhode Island include the following:
1. Rhode Island Deer Hunting
Whitetail deer hunting in Rhode Island is not in itself a revered sport, but the deer horns serve as trophies for hunters. Deer hunting in Rhode Island is common because of the delicious deer meat called venison.
2. Rhode Island Turkey Hunting
Turkey hunting is fun in Rhode Island. The game is very special in the state. They are quite difficult to hunt because they blend well with their environment and are very effective games.
3. Rhode Island Duck Hunting
Duck hunting in Rhode Island is usually a lively event. Ducks are quite fast and have a speed that can cover a distance of 1 mile in 1 minute. During their yearly migration, ducks can move as far as South America and come back again.
4. Rhode Island Goose Hunting
There are various geese available for hunting in Rhode Island. It is one of the states favored by goose hunters in the US. The popular species of geese found in the state are Snow geese, Blue geese, and Canadian geese.
5. Rhode Island Pheasant Hunting
Pheasant hunting in Rhode Island is not a walk in the park. Pheasants blend well with their environment and make use of this to guise from hunters. Like in most parts of the nation, pheasants are abundant in Rhode Island. They inhabit regions of the state like meadows, wooden, and field areas.
6. Rhode Island Quail Hunting
Quail hunting in Rhode Island is a famous sport. They inhabit fields and farming settlements in the state. They come in mixtures of various colors like black, grey, browns, etc. They are very difficult to hunt too.
7. Rhode Island Grouse Hunting
Grouse know how to blend into their surroundings and hide from hunters because of their colors. They occur in large numbers in Rhode Island and inhabit farming lands, wooden areas, meadows, and fields.
Rhode Island Shooting Ranges
Some of the shooting ranges available to the public in Rhode Island include the following:
- East Warren Rod and Gun Club
- Great Swamp Range
- Peace Dale Shooting Preserve
Rhode Island Hunting Land for Sale and Lease
Hunting lands for sale in Rhode Island include the following:
- South Kingstown, Rhode Island (Washington County) 4.16 acres
- South Kingstown, Rhode Island (Washington County) 3.13 acres
- Narragansett, Rhode Island (Washington County) 1.8 acres
- Foster, Rhode Island (Providence County) 42.8 acres
- Coventry, Rhode Island (Kent County) 5.4 acres
- North Kingstown, Rhode Island (Washington County) 1.84 acres
- Warren, Rhode Island (Bristol County) 0.96 acres
- Coventry, Rhode Island (Kent County) 0.11 acres
- Westerly, Rhode Island (Washington County) 0.46 acres
- Richmond, Rhode Island (Washington County) 2 acres
There are no hunting lands available for lease in Rhode Island at the moment.
Rhode Island offers a diverse and exciting hunting experience for both residents and non-residents. With its strict regulations, responsible hunting is encouraged, ensuring the conservation of wildlife for future generations. Whether you’re interested in deer, turkeys, ducks, or other game animals, Rhode Island has something to offer every hunting enthusiast.
1. Can non-residents hunt in Rhode Island?
Yes, non-residents can hunt in Rhode Island by obtaining the appropriate hunting licenses and permits.
2. Are there any restrictions on hunting weapons in Rhode Island?
Yes, Rhode Island has specific regulations regarding the types of hunting weapons that can be used for different game species.
3. Can hunters open carry while hunting?
Yes, hunters are allowed to open carry while hunting, but there are restrictions on using firearms while bow hunting.
4. What are some of the popular game species in Rhode Island?
Some of the popular game species in Rhode Island include deer, turkeys, ducks, geese, pheasants, quail, and grouse.
5. Are there public shooting ranges available in Rhode Island?
Yes, there are public shooting ranges available in Rhode Island where hunters can practice their shooting skills.