Hunting at John H. Chafee

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The primary objective of a national wildlife refuge is to provide habitat for the conservation and protection of wildlife. The harvest of surplus animals is one tool used to manage wildlife populations. Carefully managed hunts maintain wildlife populations at a level compatible with the environment, provide wholesome recreational opportunities, and permit the use of a valuable, renewable resource. 


2021 - 2022 John H. Chafee NWR Hunting Information

All hunters are responsible for reviewing and abiding by all federal and State regulations while hunting on the refuge.

Regulations:  Both State and federal regulations apply, including all required licenses and stamps. For information about Rhode Island hunting licenses and regulations, visit RI DEM site.

NOTICE: Archery only hunting for big game (white-tailed deer, fall season wild turkey, coyote, and fox seasons).  Spring wild turkey season is CLOSED on refuge lands. Archery hunters must obtain and carry the Rhode Island Archery Proficiency Certification while on refuge lands.

Remember! Your signed brochure authorizes you to take specific game only. Harming, collecting, or disturbing any other wildlife is a violation of refuge regulations and is cause for prosecution.

Clarification on HUNTING SAFETY ZONES
On Rhode Island National Wildlife Refuge lands, no hunting is allowed within the hunt safety zones (see program information below). Hunters may not discharge weapons into, from, or within a hunt safety zone. Safety zones for archery hunting include areas within 200 feet of a dwelling. For firearms, all areas within 500 feet of a dwelling.

Hunters may pass through safety zones on their way to hunt units, but weapons must be unloaded (including archery equipment) within safety zones. Some, but not all safety zones are marked in the field. It is the hunters responsibility to know where safety zones are located.


2021 - 2022 Waterfowl Hunting

John H. Chafee NWR provides waterfowl hunting opportunities at designated hunt units on the refuge. Waterfowl hunting is permitted during the State waterfowl season. All hunters are required to print, read, sign, and carry a current year waterfowl hunting brochure as written permission to access the refuge lands for waterfowl hunting.

Please review the Waterfowl Hunting Program below prior to entering the field. Some, but not all safety zones are marked in the field. Please submit your waterfowl harvest report (FWS Form 3-2361) to the refuge by March 15, 2022. If you have any questions, please call the refuge at 401-364-9124.

2021-2022 Waterfowl Hunting Brochure (.pdf file)


2021 - 2022 Deer and Turkey Hunting

John H. Chafee NWR provides white-tailed deer and wild turkey (fall season) hunting opportunities at designated hunt units on the refuge. All units are limited to archery only hunting. All hunters are required to print, read, sign, and carry a current year Big and Upland Game Hunting Brochure as written permission to access the refuge lands for hunting.

Refuge deer hunters may take coyote and fox during the refuge deer season. Please review the Big Game Hunting Program information below prior to entering the field. Some, but not all safety zones are marked in the field. Scouting is allowed one week before the start of the season. Hunters must carry the signed refuge hunt brochure while scouting.

Submit your harvest report (FWS form 3-2359) to the refuge by March 15, 2022. If you have any questions, please call the refuge at 401-364-9124.

2021 - 2022 Big and Upland Game Hunting Brochure


John H. Chafee NWR Waterfowl Hunting Program 2021-22 

John H. Chafee NWR Big Game Hunting Program 2021-22