Rhode Island Freshwater Sizes and Limits
Minimum Sizes & Possession Limits
( * ) numbers refer to information at bottom of page
|Trout||(1 - 5, 10 - 16)||4/9 - 11/30||5||8"|
|(3 - 5, 10 - 16)||12/1 - 2/28||2||8"|
|Atlantic Salmon||CLOSED ( see abstract for diadromous regulations)|
|Domestic (landlocked) Atlantic Salmon||(1 - 3, 5, 8, 10 - 16)||4/9 - 2/28||2||11"|
|Northern Pike||1, 6, 14-16||No Closed Season||2||24"|
|Chain Pickerel||(1, 6, 14-16)||No Closed Season||5||14"|
|Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass||(1, 7, 14-16)||No Closed Season||5||12"|
|American Eel||(1, 9, 14-16)||No Closed Season||25||9"|
|River Herring (Alewives, Blueback herring) Shad & Smelt||CLOSED|
|All Other Freshwater Fish||(1, 14-16)||No Closed Seaso||None||None|
|Striped Bass||(17)||No Closed Season||1||28" - >35"***|
*** Striped Bass Fin Clipping: All striped bass 34" or larger harvested recreationally must have the entire right pectoral fin removed at the time of harvest.
** Creel Limit - Number of fish per person per day
* Exceptions as listed below:
- All lengths are measured from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail.
- The open season on all species of trout, salmon, charr shall close on the last day of February at midnight and shall commence at 6:00 AM on the second Saturday of April, annually.
- From the second Saturday in April through November 30th annually, the daily creel and possession limits for trout shall be five (5) fish. From December 1st through the last day of February, annually, the daily creel and possession limits for trout shall be two (2) fish.
- New Regulation (2021): The minimum size of all trout or charr species taken from the waters of the state shall be eight inches (8"). This applies to both wild and stocked trout.
- A Trout Conservation Stamp is required of an angler who wishes to (a) keep or possess a trout, domestic (landlocked) salmon, or charr or (b) fish in a designated ‘catch and release’ area or in a ‘fly fishing only’ area. Learn more here.
- The daily creel and possession limits for northern pike shall be two (2) fish and the minimum size shall be twenty-four inches (24"). The daily creel and possession limits for chain pickerel shall be five (5) fish and the minimum size shall be fourteen inches (14").
- The daily creel and possession limits for black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) shall be five (5), either singularly or in aggregate and the minimum size shall be twelve (12) inches. No person shall possess any black bass less than twelve (12) inches in length.
- AMENDED (2021): The daily creel and possession limit for domestic (landlocked) Atlantic salmon (Salmo Salar) in the fresh waters of Rhode Island shall be two (2) fish per day and shall be included in the daily limit for trout, salmon, or charr. The minimum size limit for domestic or land-locked Atlantic Salmon is eleven inches (11"). No person shall take any Atlantic salmon from the Pawcatuck River downstream of the Potter Hill Dam.
- The recreational creel or possession limits for American eel (Anguilla rostrata) shall be twenty-five (25) fish per day, per person and the minimum size shall be nine inches (9"). No person shall take an eel from the freshwaters of the state unless in possession of a valid RI Freshwater Fishing License. There will be no closed season. No American eel may be commercially harvested from the freshwaters of the state and offered for sale without a valid commercial fishing license per RI Marine Fisheries (RIMF) regulations. If harvesting commercially with a valid commercial license from the freshwaters of the state, fishermen must adhere to regulations as set forth in RIMF regulations 250-RICR-90-00-3.
- The creel and possession limit for trout or charr taken in the Wood River between Route 165 and Barberville Dam at Arcadia Road shall be limited to two (2) fish from the second Saturday in May through the last day of February (taken singularly or in aggregate).
- With the exception of designated ‘catch and release’ areas, any legally caught trout, salmon, or charr taken from the fresh waters of Rhode Island shall be immediately released alive into the waters from which they were taken or shall be killed at once and become part of the daily creel limit.
- That portion of the Falls River, Exeter, from the bridge at Austin Farm road downstream approximately 2 miles to the bridge off Brook Trail is designated a ‘no kill’ or ‘catch and release’ area. Fishing is permitted only with artificial lures equipped with a single barbless hook or a single barbed hook which has been crimped. All fish caught must be returned to the water immediately. The possession of any trout while fishing in this section of the river shall be prima facie evidence that said trout, salmon or charr were taken in violation of this regulation.
- NEW REGULATION: Beaver River, Richmond - the portion from the confluence of the Beaver River and the Pawcatuck River, upstream to the New London Turnpike, Richmond, shall be designated as a ‘no kill’, ‘catch and release’, area. Fishing shall be permitted with artificial lures equipped with a single barbless hook; all fish caught shall be returned to the water immediately. The possession of any trout, salmon, or char while fishing shall be prima facie evidence that said trout, salmon, or charr was taken in violation of these Rules and Regulations. For more information: "Beaver River: Catch and Release in the Beaver River: Set Aside for Rhode Island’s Wild Salmonid".
- Beach Pond, Exeter—Trout season will open on the second Saturday of April at 6:00AM and close at midnight on the last day of February, annually. Rhode Island regulations apply for trout, charr, black bass, and chain pickerel. The daily possession and creel limits for Atlantic salmon shall be one (1) per Connecticut regulations. Also in accordance with CT regulations, six (6) lines with a single hook each may be used while ice fishing.
- Killingly Pond, Glocester and Hazard Pond, West Greenwich, Rhode Island regulations apply for trout, charr, black bass, and chain pickerel. Six (6) lines with a single hook each may be used while ice fishing in accordance with CT regulations.
- Wallum Lake, Burrillville—Rhode Island Regulations apply.
- Striped bass, although a regulated marine species, are often caught in some freshwater rivers of the state recreationally. In these instances, please note that marine regulations will apply, please refer to RI Marine Fisheries Regulations 250-RICR-90-00-7.