Valley Breeze

The North Providence Breeze 11-06-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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NORTH PROVIDENCE EDITION | VALLEY BREEZE | NOVEMBER 6-12, 2019 THE VALLEY 15 DYLAN FERREIRA, senior wildlife biologist with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management Division of Fish and Wildlife, measures the antlers on a male deer harvested at Glocester's Durfee Hill Management Area. According to RIDEM data, the number of hunters in the state declined 40 percent between 2000 and 2017. liked, but that's because he's distract- ed with other things." The number of youth hunters in Rhode Island has fluctuated over the years, but the general trend is similar to hunting licenses overall. In 2009, the number of licensed hunters ages 12 to 14 peaked at a five-year high of 183 before drop- ping to just 78 in 2017. According to DiPietro, that's concerning, since today's young hunters are tomor- row's adult hunting population. Some bright spots There are a few bright spots for hunting in Rhode Island. Though the number of hunters has been in near-constant decline for the past 20 years, fee increases and restructuring in the RIDEM's license and permitting system means that the total amount of funds collected from hunting and fishing activities remains more or less steady. In 2017, those activi- ties brought in close to $1.1 mil- lion, forming the 25 percent match required by the Pittman-Robertson Act. The decline also appears to be reversing. In 2018, licensed hunters saw their first population growth in six years, increasing to 7,564 hunt- ers from 6,291 in 2017. Youth hunt- ing was also up last year, with 91 hunters compared with 78 the year before. It's too early to tell if the increase will continue, but both DiPietro and Ferreira speculated it might be due to the popularity of the state's new online resources. Hunters can now apply for licenses and take the basic hunter education course online, activities that previously required visiting a vendor or sitting for sev- eral hours of classwork. "The bottom line is, we want to get people involved with hunting and to get more hunting licenses," said DiPietro. A new way to conservation? With fewer hunters in the gen- eral population, Ferreira questioned whether a new model might eventu- ally be developed to replace some of the lost conservation funds. Activities such as hiking, biking and birding are growing in popularity and bring large numbers of users to state manage- ment areas without generating any funds. Some day, he said, other out- door industries may have to step up if their customers expect to continue benefitting from state programs and lands. "I always think that conservation will be here. I always think we'll have capable people managing. I just don't know how and if the funding will change," he said. ETHAN OSENKOWSKI of Coventry takes aim at a flying clay target during a recent Youth Waterfowl Mentored Hunt Training Day hosted by the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management at the Great Swamp Shooting Range in West Kingston. The event was supported by hunter educa- tion funds from the Pittman- Robertson Act. From preceding page DYLAN FERREIRA, left, and JENNY KILBURN, both employees of the RIDEM Division of Fish and Wildlife, speak to youth during a recent Youth Waterfowl Mentored Hunt Training Day. The free program is one of many recruitment efforts the state has to get young people interested in the sport. KADEN OSENKOWSKI of Coventry gets instruction from Division of Law Enforcement Officer JOSHUA BEUTH during a recent Youth Waterfowl Mentored Hunt Training Day hosted by the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. In your time of need, The North Providence Breeze will print your loved one's full obituary for a small charge. The paper also places the obituary on our Web site, valleybreeze.com, as soon as it is provided to us by your family's funeral director. Notification to friends and neighbors is also made weekdays on WOON-AM radio announcements. Should you desire our services, kindly inform your funeral director. The full charge is $90, or $125 for lengthy obituaries, in the edition of your choice. You may place the obituary in any of our other editions for $50 each. Thank you. OBITUARIES St. Jude Novena May the sacred heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved and preserved throughout the world now and forever. Sacred heart of Jesus, pray for us. St. Jude, worker of miracles, pray for us. St. Jude, helper of the helpless, pray for us. Say this prayer 9 times a day. By the 8th day, your prayer will be answered. This prayer has never been known to fail and publication must be promised. L.A.M. 3rd Generation Family Owned and Operated Geoffrey Greene ~ LfD Jennifer Greene faGan ~ LfD 2251 Mineral Spring Avenue, North Providence, RI 231-9307 • www.robbinsfuneralhome.com

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