2023 Rhode Island Youth Waterfowl Training & Mentored Hunt

RI DEM's Division of Fish and Wildlife is teaming up with Rhode Island’s chapters of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers and Ducks Unlimited and other partners to offer Rhode Island's annual Youth Waterfowl Training & Mentored Hunt this fall. All youth ages 12 to 15 who have completed a Hunter Education Class are invited to apply. Don't delay - space is limited and applications are due August 25.

This multi-day event includes a Training & Cookout for youth and their parents, in addition to the mentored hunt. The Training & Cookout will occur on Sunday, October 15, then participants will be paired with experienced mentors and partake in a mentored youth waterfowl hunt on Saturday, October 28. A current RI hunting license and Harvest Information Program (HIP) permit are required for participation.


Event Overview

Day 1: Family Welcome Event & Youth Training

Sunday, October 15

8:30 am – 1:30 pm in West Kingston, RI

The training day is a fun way to help our youth hunters build their confidence, meet other youth hunters, learn new information around topics like firearm safety and waterfowl hunting rules and regulation, and practice their skills to help prepare them for their upcoming hunt. Participants will have an opportunity to practice with clay targets during the training. Clay targets, safety gear, and 12- and 20-gauge ammunition will be provided. Lunch is provided and guardians are encouraged to attend!


Day 2: Mentored Youth Hunt

Saturday, October 28

4 am – 11 am, hunting locations TBD

(rain or shine)

Youth will be matched with experienced mentors that will safely guide them through their waterfowl hunting experience. After the hunt, youth and mentors will gather for breakfast and share stories about their early morning hunting experience. Breakfast will be followed by field dressing tutorials and cooking demonstrations. Guardians are welcome to join us post-hunt for breakfast.


Youth Criteria

  • Age 12 - 15 on the day of the hunt- October 28, 2023. (Those who turn 16 years old before the day of the hunt will not be eligible for this youth experience.)
  • Able to attend all parts of the program (dates listed in event overview
  • Apply by August 25th > https://forms.office.com/g/2wt1Dv4eD5
  • Required to obtain a valid 2023 Rhode Island Hunting License and Harvest Information Program (HIP) permit.*

* To purchase a Rhode Island Hunting License, a first-time hunter must attend and pass a Hunter Safety Course. To find times and locations of Hunter Safety Courses visit, http://www.dem.ri.gov/huntereducation.

*To purchase a Rhode Island Hunting License and HIP permit please visit rio.ri.gov 


Application Directions 

This year, applicants will be entered into a lottery. Participants will be selected by a random number generator system. Youth will be notified of their acceptance into the program in early to mid-September

Youth Waterfowl Mentored Hunt Application is closed for 2023. Come back next year! 


Questions? Please contact: Madison.Proulx@dem.ri.gov

The 2023 Rhode Island Youth Waterfowl Training & Mentored Hunt is made possible through support from The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program (WSFR). RI DEM works to protect and enhance wildlife habitat in Rhode Island forests and management areas to ensure healthier, more diverse, and abundant wildlife populations. Hunting has a long tradition in Rhode Island, supporting family customs, connecting people with nature, and attracting tourism to the state. Hunters help provide funding for wildlife conservation through their purchase of firearms and ammunition through the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program (WSFR) and generate more matching federal funds ($3 federal match for every $1 state contributed) through the purchase of their state hunting licenses and permits.

youth waterfowl hunt participants