Commercial Licensing, Logbooks & Reporting


Catch and Effort Reporting for Fishermen

All commercial fishermen with a multipurpose (MPURP) license a Resident Standard Fishing License (RSTND) or a Non Resident Standard Fishing License (NRSTND) with a finfish, crustacean, or unlimited shellfish endorsement must report catch and effort to RIDMF. The method in which required reports are submitted (federal VTR, state paper logbook, or state electronic reporting - eTRIPS) must be declared at the time of license issuance.

If paper logbook is selected, a paper logbook endorsement must be purchased at the time of license issuance/renewal.  The paper logbook endorsement is not available after the license renewal season/after the purchase of a license.

Which reporting method should you choose?

flowchart about reporting catches
FAQ's on catch and effort reporting

If you only shellfish, do not harvest whelk, and do not fish on a federally permitted vessel with a VTR requirement, "no fishing reports" must be entered using either eTRIPS or the paper logbook (endorsement required).

If you harvest whelk, all trips when whelk was harvested must be reported using either eTRIPS or the paper logbook (endorsement required).

First, all Party/Charter captains must sign up for eTRIPS (link found below), regardless of already having an account.  When requesting an account, the captains Merchant Marine Credential must be provided.

Once an account is set-up, all trips must be reported using eTRIPS (online or the mobile application) within 48 hours of the end of the trip.

Electronic Reporting for Fishermen

All commercial fishermen who declared electronic as their reporting method and all Party and Charter licensed fishermen must report all trips electronically to RIDMF through either eTRIPS Desktop or eTRIPS Mobile.

Paper Logbook Reporting for Fishermen

To report using a paper catch and effort logbook a paper logbook endorsement must be purchased at the time of license issuance/renewal.  No paper logbooks will be accepted from fishermen without the paper logbook endorsement.

Federally Permitted Fishermen

Commercial fishermen with federal permit with a federal Vessel Trip Report (VTR) requirement do not need to submit copies of their federal trips to RIDMF.  Instead, fishermen need to submit a single form to DMF so their reporting compliance can be accounted for.  Any trips completed without a federal VTR requirement must be reported to RIDMF via either the paper logbook or eTRIPS.

Dockside Sales Reporting

Commercial fishermen with a dockside sales endorsement on their license must report all activity to RIDMF using the dockside sales paper logbook.  Dockside sales are permitted only for live lobsters and live crabs directly from the vessel to the final consumer.

Electronic Reporting for Dealers

All RI Seafood Dealers are required to report their purchases to SAFIS eDR twice a week. Reports are required for all primary purchases of wild harvest and aquaculture marine species. All reports are due within 5 days of the primary purchase.

New Licenses for Direct Sales of Certain Seafood Products

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Division has filed an emergency regulation that establishes a new Direct Sale Dealer License. The new dealer license is available to RI residents holding a valid commercial fishing license or resident landing permit that allows for the harvest and landing of finfish and/or crustaceans in RI.

The license authorizes the direct sale of certain species of finfish directly to consumers and licensed seafood retailers from the vessel on which they were harvested. The license also authorizes the sale, and transport for sale, of live lobsters and crabs directly to consumers and licensed seafood retailers from the vessel on which they were harvested.

Dockside sales of lobsters/crabs directly to consumers, conducted pursuant to an existing dockside sales endorsement, may continue as permitted by the endorsement, and are not affected by this new dealer license. Holders of an existing dockside sales endorsement who wish to sell live lobsters/crabs directly to licensed seafood retailers, and/or wish to engage in the delivery and sale of live lobsters/crabs, and/or wish to sell finfish dockside, must obtain the new Direct Sale Dealer License.

The new Direct Sale Dealer License includes a number of provisions governing harvest, handling, reporting, and direct-sale activities undertaken pursuant to the license, all of which must be strictly adhered to. Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to read thoroughly the Protocols and Guidance for Direct Sales of Marine Species in Rhode Island to determine if they can meet all requirements associated with the new license.

For questions pertaining to the new license, contact Robert Ballou at