Prepare for the 2023 hunting seasons by enrolling in a hunter safety course. Whether looking to give hunting a try or simply learn more about firearm safety, the Wisconsin DNR has classes available. It’s never too early to think about completing hunter education or retaking the course as a refresher.
Those who complete a hunter safety course play a vital role in keeping Wisconsin a safe place to hunt. Most hunting incidents in Wisconsin involve hunters older than 40, decades after learning firearm safety rules in their hunter safety education courses. It may be time for veteran hunters to do a refresh of these valuable lessons.
More than 20,000 people take hunter education courses in Wisconsin each year, making early enrollment important for anyone interested in taking a class.
“Whether you’re new to hunting or have many years of experience, the lessons learned in a hunter education course are invaluable,” says Lt. Michael Weber, DNR Hunter Education Administrator. “Hunter education has played a pivotal role in promoting safe hunting practices across Wisconsin and will continue to do so into the future.”
Anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1973, is required to have a hunter education certification to purchase a hunting license unless hunting under the Mentored Hunting Law. The DNR offers online Hunter Education options for adults 18 and older.
If a hands-on method is preferred, there are two other ways to complete courses that strengthen hunting knowledge and safety skills.
Hands-On, In-Person Training
- Internet + Field Day: This training allows you to complete some training online and then attend one day of training with a certified instructor. This class is a good fit for a person that has handled firearms or is going to be hunting with someone that has more experience to help the novice build hunting skills. During this class, there are approximately four to six hours of firearm handling opportunities. All age groups are welcome.
- Traditional Class: This training offers a more hands-on approach to working with a certified instructor over a few days. Most students and families enjoy this option because they can do it right in their community. This option provides students with opportunities to handle hunting equipment, learn about safe hunting practices, shooting and many other topics. In-person feedback from instructors also enhances student learning. All age groups are welcome.
Before enrolling in any course, interested students must first obtain a Wisconsin Customer ID number.
All course options, links to enroll and cost information are outlined on the DNR’s website.
Become An Instructor
Already certified in hunter education? The DNR encourages individuals to consider bringing their education enthusiasm and calling for volunteerism to join our team of instructors.
Volunteer instructors are key to having successful education programs. Becoming a volunteer Hunter Education or Learn to Hunt instructor is a great way to help save lives, prevent injuries, meet people in your community and positively influence the attitudes and actions of other outdoor recreationists.
In these programs, students learn and perform how to be safe, legal and responsible hunters.
Volunteer Hunter Education Instructors must be at least 18 years old, graduate from the Hunter Safety student course in Wisconsin, be willing to devote the necessary time and effort to carry out program responsibilities and pass a background check. Learn more on the DNR’s Volunteer Instructor webpage.
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