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Mountain lions are not even mentioned in Rhode Island's legal code.

In the box below you will find all the governing state statutes, mountain lion legal status, state laws, information about the state legislature, initiative and referendum processes, and the state wildlife agency, mountain lion management plans, mountain lion hunting laws, depredation laws, and other regulations as appropriate.

  • Return to the portal page for Rhode Island.

  • The status of Puma concolor in Rhode Island.

  • State law and regulations affecting cougars.

  • The history of cougars in Rhode Island.

  • Ecosystems and habitat in Rhode Island.

  • Cougar science and research in Rhode Island.

  • Our library of media, research and reports.

  • How you can take action to help!

Rhode Island Cougar Laws and Regulations

Generally, treatment of wildlife in the State of Rhode Island is governed by the State of Rhode Island General Laws – the state’s collection of its current laws. Since our summary below may not be completely up to date, you should be sure to review the most current law for the State of Rhode Island.

You can check the statutes directly at a state-managed website
These statutes are searchable.

Rhode Island’s wildlife regulations can be found in the Fish and Wildlife section of the Rhode Island Rules and Regulations – the state’s collection of all its agencies’ rules. The regulations are set by the director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.

The Legislature

The State of Rhode Island General Assembly is the state’s part-time, bicameral legislature. The lower chamber – the House of Representatives – is made up of 75 members who serve 2-year terms. The upper chamber – the Senate – consists of 38 members who also serve 2-year terms. The Democratic Party has controlled both chambers of the legislature since at least 1992. The State of Rhode Island maintains this webpage to help you contact your state legislators.

The Rhode Island State Constitution governs when the state legislature is to meet. Regular sessions must begin annually on the first Tuesday of January. The state constitution allows the governor to call special legislative sessions on extraordinary occasions. The constitution does not appear to limit the duration of either regular or special sessions.

Click here to visit the scorecard's website...

Environmental Scorecard

League of Conservation Voters

The League of Conservation Voters' scorecard considers the State Legislature's environmental records since 1971. It quantifies the environmental votes of each individual legislator — an important first step in considering accountability — and provides critical qualitative assessments as well. The scorecard will help you to know your legislator before you write a letter in support of cougars.

Click here to view our Activist Guide...

Becoming a Mountain Lion Activist

There are lots of opportunities to take action!

Are you new to mountain lion activism? You want to change your local environment to improve it for cougars... but you don't know how to start. You may feel like you are all alone... but it takes just one person to change the attitudes and lifestyles of hundreds of others. You don't need to belong to a group. It doesn't take special skills or superhuman abilities. You just need to care enough about cougars to want to help them survive. You've already done the hard part, now let us help you with the next step.

Click here to open a new window and visit the agency's website...

Janet Coit, Director

RI DEM Providence Office
235 Promenade Street
Providence, RI 02908
(401) 222-4700 ex. 2409

Wildlife Division
Jason Osenkowski, Deputy Chief
277 Great Neck Road
West Kingston, RI 02892
(401) 789-7481

Please write to the director and express your concern for lions in RI.

Thank the agency when they take steps to protect our state's cougars. When they fall short of expectations, politely ask for policy reform and more officer training.



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