No Fluke

Local waterways stocked for Opening Day this Saturday


Opening Day of the freshwater fishing season in Rhode Island begins at 6 a.m. on Saturday, April 13. The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) has stocked more than 60,000 brook, brown, rainbow and golden rainbow trout in select areas in advance of the season.

Local East Bay waterways that have been stocked and are ready to be fished include: Adamsville Brook and Pond, Tiverton and Little Compton; Brickyard Pond, Barrington; Dundery Brook, Little Compton; Eight Rod Farm Pond, Tiverton; Upper Melville Pond (Thurston Gray Pond), Portsmouth, which is wheel chair accessible; Lower Melville Pond, Portsmouth; Ponderosa Park Pond, Little Compton, which is a children-only pond during specified times; Simmons Mill Pond, Tiverton; Ten Mile River, East Providence; Tiverton Trout Pond, Tiverton; and Willett Avenue Pond, East Providence.

More than 100 freshwater locations will be stocked, including the children’s ponds. For a list of trout stocked waters and rules governing children’s ponds, see trout waters and other information of interest to anglers at:

A 2024 fishing license is required for anglers 15 years of age and older. A Trout Conservation Stamp is also required of anyone wishing to keep or possess a trout or to fish in a catch-and-release or “fly-fishing only” area. Trout stamps are not required for persons possessing trout taken from a lake or pond that shares a border with Rhode Island.

In Rhode Island, the minimum size for trout is 8”, and the daily creel or possession limit is five, from April 13, 2024, through Dec. 1, 2024, and two from Dec. 1, 2024, through Feb. 28, 2025.

Getting ready to fish is easy

Freshwater fishing in Rhode Island and Massachusetts is outstanding. Both states stock waterways with a variety of trout and salmon, which makes catching them easy this time of year.  Freshwater fishing is a good way to start fishing, as anglers of all ages can fish from the safety and comfort of a pond, lake or river shore. 

Fishing provides adventure, excitement and food if you like to clean and cook your catch (which is not necessary, as many anglers practice catch-and-release).  And it gives us an opportunity to be outdoors with family and friends and/or gain a bit of solace with the environment.

Here are three simple steps to get started.

One: fishing licenses and regulations. Freshwater fishing is regulated by the States of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  See links to licensing information below.

Two: what you need to get started. For freshwater fishing, use a light to medium action rod and reel combination such as an Ugly Stick, Berkley or other rod/reel combination ($39 to $69). You will also need some hooks and bobbers that float baits in the water column and move to signal that you have a bite. If recently stocked, trout can be fished with a synthetic bait (as that is what they eat when in the hackery) like Power Bait ($4 to $6), or as the fish acclimate to the natural environment, live bait such as night crawler worms or shiners can be used. Once anglers have mastered casting and retrieving, lures can be used such as spinner baits and jerk baits. 

Three: where to catch fish. Rhode Island DEM’s Division of Fish & Wildlife stocks more than 100 ponds, rivers, brooks and lakes with a variety of trout and salmon so you might want to check waterways in your area. Massachusetts stocks designated trout waterways with more than 500,000 fish each year. Many of them are stocked two or three times a year.

For a complete list of stocked ponds, license information and a copy of the RI Freshwater Fishing Regulations and Guide visit . In Massachusetts visit Freshwater Fishing |

Where’s the bite?

Freshwater fishing. Trout season in Rhode Island opens Saturday, April 13, however many trout ponds are open for fishing in Massachusetts prior to this date.  “Anglers just wanting to get tight on something have been traveling to Massachusetts to fish for trout. But here in Rhode Island anglers are starting to get excited too,” said Jeff Sullivan of Lucky Bait & Tackle, Warren. Dave Henault of Ocean State Tackle, Providence, said, “Anglers are gearing up for opening day.  We are open this weekend and have a good supply of Power Baits, which have been the hot bait for the past few years.” For freshwater fishing information and licenses in Massachusetts, visit Freshwater Fishing |; and in Rhode Island

Saltwater. Anglers continue to find holdover school striped bass in estuaries.  Fishing for holdover stripers in our estuaries was very good before the heavy rains, so with warm weather arriving after the rains, fishing should be excellent. “The Narrow River has been producing school striped bass for customers fairly consistently,” said Henault of Ocean State Tackle.

Jeff Sullivan of Lucky Bait & Tackle said, “We have had quite a few anglers getting ready for both tautog and striped bass.  They are getting their lead core line ready for trolling and buying a lot of soft plastic lures mimicking shad. I do not expect it to be very long before the striped bass fishing explodes due to the warm weather we are expecting next week.”

Dave Monti holds a master captain’s license and charter fishing license. He serves on a variety of boards and commissions and has a consulting business focusing on clean oceans, habitat preservation, conservation, renewable energy, and fisheries related issues and clients. Forward fishing news and photos to or visit

2024 by East Bay Media Group

Barrington · Bristol · East Providence · Little Compton · Portsmouth · Tiverton · Warren · Westport
Meet our staff
Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.