Welcome Letter

Fishing Regulations Rhode Island Freshwater Fishing

On behalf of Governor Gina Raimondo, I am excited to introduce the third annual Rhode Island Freshwater Fishing Regulation Guide.

This guide is for newcomers as well as seasoned anglers and boaters. It provides current regulations related to freshwater fishing and recreational boating and highlights the survey work, initiatives and research conducted by the Division of Fish & Wildlife to enhance these recreational opportunities in Rhode Island.

Fishing is a popular outdoor activity for people of all ages, attracting residents and tourists alike. Whether it is pursuit of bass, trout, or the Northern Pike (our largest freshwater gamefish), Rhode Island is known for its excellent and varied opportunities for freshwater fishing. It is also a year-round pursuit, with fishing available in the spring for opening day of trout season, excellent fall fishing, and winter ice fishing.

The Department’s hatchery program ensures that over 100 fishing areas are stocked with brook, rainbow and brown trout several times a year to accommodate the growing demand by resident and non-resident anglers. For the uninitiated, we encourage you to fish with us on Free Fishing Days on May 6 and May 7 and try your luck catching one of the coveted Golden Rainbow Trout. I guarantee you will be hooked on fishing!

Recreational fishing is also important to our economy, contributing more than $130 million annually. There are an estimated 175,000 recreational anglers (age 16+) in Rhode Island, according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation.

A special thanks to Rhode Island’s angling and boating community. This publication would not be possible without you. In fact, this is your publication, funded via the Federal Aid in Sportfish Restoration (Wallop-Breaux Amendment) through contributions from anglers and boaters on the sales of equipment, motorboat fuels, license sales and Trout Stamps. As Director, I extend a sincere thank you to all the sportsmen and sportswomen who have contributed to this valuable conservation program.

We hope this guide enhances your fishing and boating experiences and that you feel encouraged to get out there and enjoy Rhode Island’s picturesque fishing areas and the tranquility and connection to nature that fishing and boating provides. Whether you have been fishing all your life, getting back into the sport, or trying it for the first time, we guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Tight lines, everyone!
Janet Coit, Director


“It is the policy of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental

Management to offer its services and accommodations to all orderly persons, and, as required, to all properly licensed persons, without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, or disability.”

If you believe that you have been discriminated against in any program, activity, facility, or if you desire further information, please write to the Office for Equal Opportunity, U.S. Department of the Interior.

Office of the Secretary, Washington, D.C. 20240