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Published March 13, 2020
Updated March 1, 2022

COVID-19 Updates

March 1, 2022 UPDATE:

Following the RI State Guidelines, fully vaccinated adults and children over 5 years old are not required to wear masks at Audubon Society of RI facilities and programs. Those that have not been vaccinated and children who cannot be vaccinated (between the ages of 2-5) will be asked to wear a mask. As always, children under the age of 2 are not required to wear a mask. This is subject to change. Of course, we welcome any visitors that would like to continue to wear a mask while visiting our facility.

Actions We Are Taking in Response to COVID-19

A Message from Lawrence Taft

The Audubon Society of Rhode Island is actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation for the safety of our visitors, members, staff, volunteers, and community.

  • All Audubon nature trails are open for visitation. Because of the physical and mental benefits of nature, we encourage guests to spend time outdoors and welcome them to visit our wildlife refuges.
     
  • Facilities:
    • The Audubon Nature Center and Aquarium is open to the public daily, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm. Trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset.
    •  Our headquarters office in Smithfield is open Monday - Friday, 9:30 am - 2:30 pm. Trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset.
       
  • Our program calendar will be updated as needed to reflect any cancellations. If you have any questions about specific events or programs, please contact our office at (401) 949-5454. See below for safety guidelines for program participants.
     
  • Audubon Summer Camp and the Youth Conservation League (YCL) returned for the 2021 season and will be offered once again in 2022.

Audubon has implemented the following procedures and protocols:

  • Public Nature Program safety guidelines: Audubon follows CDC guidelines for all programming. Register in advance as programs will have limited attendance capacity. As of March 1, 2022, fully vaccinated adults and children over 5 years old are not required to wear masks at Audubon Society of RI facilities and programs. Those that have not been vaccinated and children who cannot be vaccinated (between the ages of 2-5) will be asked to wear a mask. As always, children under the age of 2 are not required to wear a mask. This is subject to change. Of course, we welcome any visitors that would like to continue to wear a mask while visiting our facility.
     
  • If you have signed up for a program that has been canceled, we can either issue you a gift card to use for future programs or refund your registration fee. You may also make the choice to convert your fee into a donation. Please contact Michelle Solis at (401) 949-5454 ext. 3014.
     
  • We ask that visitors to our wildlife refuges follow the guidelines set by the State of Rhode Island for the safe use of parks and open spaces during COVID-19.
     
  • All staff members have received recommendations on how to stay healthy and prevent the spread of infection.
     
  • We continue to evaluate all measures in response to available information from the Rhode Island Department of Health. We are ready to revise our response and protocols as needed. To stay up-to-date, please check back here (asri.org/covid19); follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram; or join our email list.

Our thoughts are with all those affected by COVID-19.

In this time of uncertainty, walks in nature can provide a much needed source of stress relief. Audubon encourages the public to use the outdoor trails at the Nature Center and Aquarium, as well as trails on all of Audubon’s other public wildlife refuges across the state. For a listing of wildlife refuges and trail maps, visit www.asri.org/hike.

Stay Safe,

Lawrence J. F. Taft
Executive Director

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Neonic Pesticide Regulation Bill Passes House & Senate!

Rhode Island is on its way to making major updates to our pesticide regulations for the first time in more than a decade! Representative Kislak's and Senator Miller's bills (passed in the House on June 7 and Senate on June 14, respectively) will take harmful neonicotinoid pesticides out of the hands of untrained users. The legislation is on its way to the Governors desk! THANK YOU to everyone who helped us advance these bills by contacting their legislators; our partner advocates; and to the bill cosponsors.

Lawrence Taft, current Executive Director of the Audubon Society of Rhode Island, is retiring at the end of 2022 after a long career with the organization. The Audubon Board of Directors has recently contracted Development Guild DDI, based in Boston, to conduct the search for a new director in partnership with the search committee.