The Department of Environmental Management reminds all Rhode Islanders that, for safety reasons, they must wear fluorescent orange when in state management areas during the shotgun deer hunting season, which opened on Dec. 1.
Hunters are required to wear 500 square inches of fluorescent orange during the shotgun season. Throughout all shotgun deer seasons, all other users of state management areas also must wear at least 500 square inches of solid, daylight fluorescent orange material. For all hunters and management area users, the orange clothing should include a hat and vest worn above the waist and visible in all directions. Archers are exempt from wearing hunter orange in areas of the state that are limited to hunting by archery only. Deer hunting hours remain one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset.
The first portion of the shotgun season for deer in Zone 1 and Zone 2 runs through Sunday, Dec. 16. The second portion of the shotgun deer season opens Wednesday, Dec. 26 through Wednesday, January 2, and during this time hunters may hunt only on private lands for antlerless deer in Zones 1 and 2. The statewide bag limit is three antlered deer and antlerless deer as follows: Zone 1, four antlerless deer and one replacement tag; and Zone 2, three antlerless deer. Shotgun deer hunting is not permitted in Zone 3 (Prudence Island).
The season for shotgun deer hunting in Zone 4 (Block Island) will be open on select weekdays through Feb. 28, as published in the state's 2012-2013 Hunting and Trapping Abstract. Hunters should call the New Shoreham Police Department at 466-3220 for check station information. The bag limit on Block Island, where only private land will be open, is five antlerless deer, with additional permits available.