A woman holding up a brown trout outdoors on a frozen lake.

Outdoors in RI: Fishing getting closer, water safety, DEM regs, Fishing Show, vaccines, 2A – Jeff Gross

by Jeff Gross, contributing writer

Getting closer to Fishing Season

As usual folks up in Maine are taking some great Trout and Atlantic Salmon. The Keeper Salmon in the header photo was caught by my friend’s wife on Moosehead Lake.  Apparently, Jon has more than one keeper. Though the Salmon was released. Thursday the 29th was the last day for Trout waters until opening day in April in Rhode Island.  Since I was in the area of Silver Springs Lake and had my gear in the truck I decided to take a few casts.  A few casts – and a major bird’s nest – coupled with the brutal wind and that quickly ended that expedition.  Nearby another fisherman, Steve, was trying his luck, but alas, no fish. At least he was not having line issues.  Walking away it occurred to me that opening day of Trout season is a mere 6 weeks away. It is time to get all the gear in order.  Relining reels, checking the rods for damage, polishing and re-hooking Trout spoons takes time and the 2nd Saturday in April will be upon us in no time.

Water safety in RI

On a sad note, a Kayaker drowned last week in Narragansett Bay.  He was reported to be wearing a PFD and warm clothing but apparently took his kayak out in choppy water and upon capsizing, it appears the man died of hypothermia.  Common sense must be used if one takes a kayak or canoe into the RI waters. A short immersion in the 35F water and hypothermia sets in quick and treatment of raising the body’s core temperature must be immediate otherwise death occurs.  If you see white caps on the waterways, prudence dictates Kayak another day.

RI DEM Workshop on freshwater fishing and hunting/trapping season proposed regs

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) will be holding a public workshop on Tuesday, March 12 at 5:30 PM regarding the proposed regulations for the 2025-26 freshwater fishing season and the 2024-25 and 2025-26 hunting and trapping seasons and bag limits. The workshop’s purpose is to inform the public about regulatory proposals currently under consideration by DEM’s Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) and to give the opportunity for feedback on these and alternative proposals. The meeting will not be recorded, nor will there be written testimony. This workshop will feature short presentations about program proposals and is geared for members of the public to interact with DFW staff.

So, mark it down: Tuesday, March 12, 2024, at 5:30 PM, at the Cranston Central Library, James Giles Community Room, 140 Sockanosset Cross Road, in Cranston.

An official public hearing on the proposed regulations will be held in May with a date and time to be provided in the future. To request copies of the draft regulations, email David Kalb at [email protected] or call 401-284-3427. Copies of the draft regulations will be provided prior to the workshop, as well.


Salt Water Fishing Show

The NE Salt Water Fishing show will be held from March 8th to 10th, 2024 at the RI Convention Center. Hours will be:

Friday      1 PM to 8 PM

Saturday  9 AM to 7 PM

Sunday    10 AM to 5 PM

With 300 vendor booths plus an attendance last year of 9,600, the show should go well over 10K this year. General admission: $15 at the door. Kids 11 and under are free, and can visit the kid’s casting area. Free entry for all ladies on Sunday. Ladies – fishing is no longer just a guy’s sport: take a look at the header photo again!

Information link:


Dogs – Vaccines – Backyard Wildlife

As trout season is now closed, training and exercising of unleashed dogs on state lands comes to an end on March 14th, and reopens August 16th. During that window dogs must be on a leash of not more than 25 feet in length.  However, hunting dogs may be trained on the Midway fields in Arcadia during this time frame. Abby’s opinion on walking on a leash can be seen in the Meme.

A push by my vet for repeated vaccines for Parvo and distemper caused me to research titering Abby.  After a conversation with my old vet where she told me a Rabies vaccine doesn’t keep a dog from contracting Rabies (sounds like the Covid vaccine), I question all dog vaccines now.  If Abby titers well for Parvo and Distemper then she will never need the vaccines again!

With Coyotes infected with Rabies in RI, it is imperative to keep a close eye on man’s best friend while outdoors. It’s not only Coyotes that have rabies but of the few skunks that are left, they also have a high degree of rabies.  Prior to 2017 skunks were eradicated by rabies in the town of Westport, MA.  Opossums and Raccoons and Bats are also known carriers of rabies.  Hopefully the growing Bobcat populations do not contract the latest rabies outbreak.



Adding to the health issue RI has its first Powassan victim. The gentleman lives in Kent County and fortunately is now recovering at home after contracting the disease in late January.  It is imperative to go over oneself and family and pets after being outdoors especially in the woods or fields.  A friend found his daughter’s yellow lab covered with pin head size tick nymphs in January.  These minute parasites can be easily mistaken for a grain of dirt. Often it takes 2 to do a thorough exam.


Second Amendment and anti-gun bills

Tuesday February 27th had the start of the 2024 offensive of anti-gun bills. This writer and a handful of others testified on the H7051 bill. 

House Bill No. 7051

BY  Potter, Boylan, Tanzi, Batista, Donovan, Caldwell, Cruz, Fogarty, McGaw, Ajello

ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO CRIMINAL OFFENSES — WEAPONS (Prohibits the operation of an outdoor gun range within one mile or closer of any kindergarten through grade twelve (K-12) schools.)

The H7051 bill has no analogous law in 1791 so therefore is unconstitutional.  The Government must prove a similar law in 1791 for their current law or bill to have any hope of constitutionality.  Like Mark W. Smith routinely says, when in doubt throw it out. In 1791 there was no law banning any ranges nor any weapons (writer’s note: Some colonists actually owned cannons, aka Howitzers, or field guns – this research will be in upcoming article) further there was no law requiring safe storage of arms. Children were quite often trained to shoot at a very young age. This writer learned to shoot at age 5 as did his children. These analogous law benchmarks are the standard that can eliminate almost all of 11-47 anti-gun laws. The only 11-47 laws that will stand are those laws pertaining to violent crime such as cold-blooded murder.  This writer also reiterated the 18 US Code 241 t the hearings. Here is the law listed on the FBI website, and the law pertains to everyone, including government officials:

Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241 – Conspiracy Against Rights:

This statute makes it unlawful for two or more persons to conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person of any state, territory or district in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him/her by the Constitution or the laws of the United States, (or because of his/her having exercised the same).

18 US code 242 from the DOJ website:

This provision makes it a crime for someone acting under color of law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States. It is not necessary that the offense be motivated by racial bias or by any other animus.

Defendants act under color of law when they wield power vested by a government entity.  Those prosecuted under the statute typically include police officers, sheriff’s deputies, and prison guards.  However other government actors, such as judges, district attorneys, other public officials, and public school employees can also act under color of law and can be prosecuted under this statute.

One needs to wonder if RI politicians are aware of the jeopardy, they are partaking in by trying to force unconstitutional laws on Rhode Islanders?

You can watch and listen to the testimony, including mine, here – just click on the photo:

This writer was able to exit the hearings at 7 pm which was unusual.  The unseen benefit was while stopping at BJ’s in Johnston a Woodcock was heard in the nearby grasses with his eeeeaaaatttt call.  Apparently, he was looking for a mate.  Signs of an early spring, I hope. 

See you next week with information on the Cargill v Garland Bump Stock case analysis that occurred Wednesday February 28th at the US Supreme Court.  (SCOTUS)


Jeffrey “Jeff” Gross spent 21 years as an Analytical Chemist at the USCG R&D Center in Groton, Connecticut, Woods Hole Laboratories, and Helix Technologies. Changing careers is a “great learning experience for everyone”, Jeff says, and I’m an avid outdoorsman and conservationist, a student of the sciences, and the world. The US holds too many wonders not to take a chance and explore them”.

Jeff is the Model Train and Railroad entrepreneur. Proud Golden Retriever owner. Ultra strong Second Amendment Advocate and Constitutionalist. “Determined seeker of the truth”.  Jeff is a RIFGPA Legislative and Legal Officer, Freshwater Chairman, NRA Liaison.

His subjects include Outdoors, Second Amendment, Model Railroading, and Whimsical. He can be reached at: [email protected]

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