Delayed stocking of Geneva Pond nixes annual derby

Delayed stocking of Geneva Pond nixes annual derby

NORTH PROVIDENCE – Mayor Charles Lombardi said he was disappointed when North Providence’s Geneva Pond at Notte Park wasn’t included on an initial list of ponds being restocked with fish, effectively canceling his annual fishing derby this month.

After calling representatives from the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management to ask why restocking wasn’t done in time for the event, he said they sent out a release that they would be delivering fish there on April 21.

Lombardi said there were about 20 ponds around the state that weren’t restocked during the first round, and he was told that the RIDEM didn’t stock them due to concerns over social distancing.

“They should have left social distancing to the communities,” he said, then promising that the fishing derby will return in 2022.

Geneva Pond was previously a children-only fishing spot, but according to the RIDEM news release, with the restocking this month, it’s now been expanded to allow adults. So basically, said Lombardi, there will “always be a derby every day.”

The mayor’s fishing derby is typically held around the middle of April.

The second round of fish stocking, which got started April 19, included Geneva Pond as well as Foster Green Acres in Foster and Memorial Park Pond in Lincoln. The RIDEM announced that the three were added to the second round of “popular and heavily fished” areas for spring restocking of trout due to improved conditions with the pandemic.

To avoid crowds at fishing areas, the RIDEM is not giving any further announcements or daily reports on stocking schedules.

A 2021 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 those possessing trout taken from a lake or pond that shares a border with Rhode Island. Fishing licenses can only be purchased online at www.dem.ri.gov/huntfish .

The minimum size of all trout or charr species taken from the waters of the state is 8 inches, measured from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail. The creel and possession limit for domestic or landlocked Atlantic salmon in the fresh waters of the state is two fish per day and shall be included in the daily limit for trout, salmon, or charr. The minimum size for domestic or landlocked stocked Atlantic salmon is 11 inches in total length.