DEM warns of outdoor hazards

Posted 9/19/20

The state Department of Environmental Management released warnings on two fronts in the past week, first announcing that state beaches will be flying purple flags warning visitors of the presence of …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Not a subscriber?


Start a Subscription

Sign up to start a subscription today! Click here to see your options.

Purchase a day pass

Purchase 24 hours of website access for $2. Click here to continue

Day pass subscribers

Are you a day pass subscriber who needs to log in? Click here to continue.


DEM warns of outdoor hazards

Posted

The state Department of Environmental Management released warnings on two fronts in the past week, first announcing that state beaches will be flying purple flags warning visitors of the presence of the Portuguese Man O' War, a marine creature with a particularly aggressive sting.

Two swimmers were stung recently at Scarborough State Beach, and DEM marine biologists hypothesize that “a warm core ring has peeled off from the Gulf Stream and come close to the Rhode Island coast.” Combined with onshore winds from the southeast, this phenomenon has “brought in a slug of water that can contain all manner of interesting creatures."

Although referred to as a jellyfish, the Portuguese Man o’ War actually is a siphonophore, a colony of different organisms working together as one and specialized to live in the water column. It is a predatory species. It uses its feeding tentacles to sting and paralyze small fishes, crustaceans, and .other invertebrates.

DEM is cautioning swimmers to swim at their own risk and be vigilant. The tentacles of the man o’ war can grow to 30 feet and longer. If swimmers see something that looks like a balloon floating on top of the water, they should stay far away.

Fluorescent orange season in the woods

On land, the DEM is reminding people who use state management areas that deer season began Saturday, Sept. 12. Hikers, bike riders, horseback riders, and all other visitors must wear solid, daylight fluorescent orange when in state management areas and undeveloped state parks.

With COVID, more and more people are using state parks, wildlife management areas, and other outdoor spaces. Some may not be aware of the law to wear orange to prevent hunting accidents.
From Sept. 12 through February and from April 17 through May, except during the shotgun deer seasons in December when a minimum of 500 square inches is required, hunters and all other users of management areas and designated undeveloped state parks must wear a minimum of 200 square inches of fluorescent orange, such as a hat. During the shotgun deer seasons in December, a minimum of 500 square inches of solid, daylight fluorescent orange clothing – a hat and vest – is required.  

For more information on hunting and associated regulations, visit www.dem.ri.gov.

2020 by East Bay Newspapers

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.