Hundreds of people from across the state and beyond have signed their names to a petition calling for a ban to duck hunting in upper Narragansett Bay.
A woman named Robin Pfahning started the petition recently on the MoveOn.org website. It states: “Stop duck hunting in upper Narragansett Bay. Gunshots starting in early morning and lasting all daylight hours are bothering hundreds of residents for the sport of a few duck hunters.”
As of Wednesday morning, Jan. 22, 374 people had signed the petition. Duck hunting takes place across Hundred Acre Cove, the Palmer River and along other waterfront stretches in Barrington. According the DEM “Waterfowl Hunting Season Guide 2013-2014,” the duck hunting season in Rhode Island can run from Sept. 1 to Feb. 9, depending on the species of ducks being hunted.
The background to the petition states: “The gunshots are loud and start very early in the morning even on weekends and last all day long. Dogs and children are frightened by the gunshots and adults are bothered by the frequent loud noise and the thought that there could be a hunting accident right in someone’s back yard.
“Duck hunters create a noticeable amount of plastic trash from spent cartridges which fall into the water. This plastic washes ashore onto our beaches in large quantities. I remember one walk I took last year where about every 10 feet i picked up a cartridge. I had a bag full in 15 minutes.
“The hunters are hunting primarily Scaup ducks who’s numbers are in decline since the 1980’s. However, the noise alone is reason enough to ban the practice since it has no benefits for the surrounding local communities.
“Please sign and spread the word!”
People from Barrington, Warren, Portsmouth, East Providence and Riverside have signed the petition as well as folks from as far away as Illinois and Toronto, Canada.
To learn more about the petition or to sign it, go to http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/ban-duck-hunting-in-upper-1.fb45?source=s.fb&r_by=6856701