RI Freshwater Fisheries Updates & Frequently Asked Questions

Freshwater Fishing Season: April 13, 2024 - February 28, 2025

Rhode Island lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams designated as trout-stocked waters are currently OPEN for fishing. While freshwater fishing is open year-round for other species, waters that are stocked for trout are closed while DEM prepares for the traditional opening day that occurs on the second Saturday in April.

This webpage will have the latest information. Please check back often using this easy-to-remember URL: www.dem.ri.gov/fishing.


2023-24 RI Freshwater Fishing Regulation Guide

2024-25 RI Freshwater Fishing Regulation Guide Cover
Page content last updated 4/8/23

Freshwater Fisheries FAQs


Yes. As of July 31, 2021, new statewide Rhode Island Freshwater Fishing Rules and Regulations are in effect.

Section 10-6.1-16: The Beaver River in Richmond is now designated as a no kill, "catch-and-release only" area. This includes the portion from the confluence of the Beaver River and the Pawcatuck River, located downstream of Shannock Hill Road, Richmond, upstream to New London Turnpike, Richmond. Fishing is permitted with artificial lures equipped with a single barbless hook or single barbed hook that has been crimped, and all fish caught shall be returned to the water immediately. The possession of any trout, salmon, or charr while fishing in this section of the river shall be primary evidence that said trout, salmon, or charr was taken in violation of these Rules and Regulations.

Section 10.6.1-17: The Beaver River has been removed from the trout stocking list; it will no longer be stocked with hatchery-raised trout.

The Beaver River is home to a robust population of wild brook trout. Brook trout are listed as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in the 2015 Rhode Island Wildlife Action Plan. Continuous work by DEM's Division of Fish and Wildlife focuses on documenting the distribution of brook trout across Rhode Island and implementing management actions to improve populations. The Town of Richmond's recent Beaver River Watershed Assessment report identifies the Beaver River as a priority area for habitat conservation for wild brook trout, including altering trout stocking practices. These findings are consistent with analyses conducted by DEM's Division of Fish and Wildlife. The aim of designating the Beaver River as catch and release-only area is to further improve the population of brook trout in the Beaver River. Furthermore, this change will provide a unique opportunity for anglers to target wild brook trout and admire them for their natural beauty.

The other major regulatory change affects children only fishing ponds. • Section 10.6.1 -9 - Children Only Ponds: In addition to the other children only ponds listed, Cass Pond in Woonsocket and Geneva Brook and Pond in North Providence have been revised to be restricted to children for only the first two days of the trout fishing season.

A. No. Camping is not allowed in non-designated areas, which include fishing access sites and boat ramps.

A. There is a limited amount of locations with portajohns. Please plan ahead: stay close to home and keep your fishing trip short.

A. Yes. DEM will be stocking trout produced at our state hatcheries for Opening Day and throughout the 2022 fishing season. View an up-to-date list full list of trout stocking locations here. Note that these locations may change.

A. Restocking will occur. For the safety of Fish and Wildlife staff, people should not approach staff while they are stocking fish.  Check the Division's Facebook feed on this page or visit RIfishwildlife on Facebook for stocking updates. You can also view the interactive map of trout stocked locations for the 2022 season (updates to come).

A. That depends.  There are several boundary waters, waters that cross state lines that have Rhode Island fishing regulations.

Connecticut Border:

  • Beach Pond is subject to Rhode Island trout regulations.
  • Peck Pond (Keach Pond) is a trout-stocked pond located in a State Park. RI regulations apply.
  • Hazard Pond and Killingly Pond are open to fishing as there is no closed season. They are non-trout waters.

 Massachusetts Border:

  • Wallum Lake is subject to Rhode Island Regulations. Massaschusetts does not have a closed season.

A. The latest fishing guide is available online at http://www.eregulations.com/rhodeisland/fishing/.

A. We encourage you to get your fishing license online 24/7 through our online licensing system: https://rio.ri.gov/.

A. All existing saltwater fishing regulations are in effect. All RI state parks and all saltwater beaches are open. Find more information at www.riparks.com. Please consult with the 2022 Saltwater Fishing Guide or our webpage for the current Marine Fishing Regulations.

A. Recreational Freshwater Fishing Licenses are required of anglers fifteen (15) years of age and older. Recreational Saltwater Fishing Licenses are required of anglers sixteen (16) years of age and older.

Fishing License Information

  1. A fishing license is required of any person 15 years of age or older wishing to catch or take fish in any freshwater stream or pond in the state (except as noted below).
  2. A fishing license can be obtained on-line at RIO.RI.GOV, from authorized agents such as bait and tackle shops, retail department stores, as well as some city and town clerk offices.
  3. RI fishing licenses are reciprocal with Connecticut only for Beach Pond, Killingly Pond, Hazard Pond, and Peck Pond, and with

    Massachusetts for Wallum Lake.
  4. The fishing license must be available and shown upon request.
  5. The fishing license expires on the last day of February annually.
  6. The fishing license will be revoked for violation of fishing laws.
  7. A fishing license is not required of minors younger than fifteen (15)years of age.
  8. A fishing license is not required of any blind person.
  9. A fishing license is not required of landowners or for members of their families when fishing from property on which they are domiciled.
  10. A free, special, permanent license may be obtained by any veteran of the armed forces who currently has a 100% disability rating or by any individual who is 100% permanently disabled.
  11. A free, special, permanent license may be obtained by any resident over 65 years of age.

License Type





Resident (or current member of the armed forces)



Combination (Hunting & Fishing)






Non-resident tourist (three (3) consecutive days)



Resident Trout Conservation Stamp



Non-resident Trout Conservation Stamp



A. Freshwater fishing licenses expire at midnight on the last day of February annually.

A. On the first full weekend of May each year, neither a Rhode Island resident nor a resident of any other state is required to possess a freshwater fishing license or a trout conservation stamp.

A. A trout conservation stamp ($6.00 online / $5.50 in person) is required of any person wishing to keep or possess a trout, salmon, or charr caught in Rhode Island waters or by any person fishing in a "catch-and-release" or "fly-fishing ONLY" area.

A. Minors under 15 years of age; RI residents over 65 years of age; persons with a 100% disability; landowner and members of their family when fishing from property on which they are actually domiciled; persons possessing trout taken from a lake or pond which shares a border with a neighboring state; persons possessing privately-owned trout caught in privately-owned ponds.

A. NO.

A. NO.

A. Many bait and tackle shops, as well as big-box stores that carry bait and tackle, remain open for online sales, curbside pickup, or limited indoor sales. Please call ahead for more information.

Trout Stocked Waters

map showing location of trout stocked waters

Access Map

Orange Safety Clothing

Blaze Orange Requirements Graph