New hunters encouraged to sign up for education course now
New hunters and trappers planning to go afield this season must first complete a mandatory hunter, bowhunter, or trapper education course before obtaining the appropriate sporting license or hunting privilege, says New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos.
With state licenses now on sale, first-time hunters and trappers are encouraged to sign up for courses, as they fill quickly. Each year, more than 45,000 New Yorkers take DEC's hunter and trapper education courses.
"Hunting and trapping are proud traditions in New York State that continue to be safely enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors each year and hunting opportunities have never been better," Seggos said. "DEC's Sportsman Education Program is effective in producing safe, ethical hunters, and we are grateful to the volunteer instructors that serve as the backbone to deliver our program. I encourage all prospective hunters to sign up early for one of the hundreds of courses offered all across New York."
DEC works closely with thousands of dedicated DEC-certified instructors statewide to provide these training courses free of charge. Courses are offered for Hunter Education, Bowhunter Education, Trapper Education, and Waterfowl Hunter Education.
DEC's online registration system makes it easy to view a list of all available courses with the student's proximity to course locations. Students can register from any device 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Courses are added continuously throughout the year. To locate a nearby hunter or trapper education course click here or call (716)372-0645.
All courses require students to review course materials and complete a homework sheet prior to attending the classroom and field session. The homework portion of the course provides an introduction to the subject and enhances the students' understanding of the course material. Proof of the completed homework is required to attend the course.
Students should register for the course well in advance of the course date in order to allow time to complete the homework requirement, which takes approximately three hours. All courses will require successful completion of an in-person field day to earn certification.
Access to the homework materials and online homework options can be found by clicking here or follow the guidelines listed in the various course announcements when you register.
Actual course manuals and homework sheets are always available from DEC wildlife offices and sportsman education instructors.