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Trapper education course information

Trapper education is serviced through the Wisconsin Cooperative Trapper Education Program (WCTEP). The WCTEP offers three ways to obtain trapper education certification for the state of Wisconsin:

  • Traditional hands-on classes
  • The mail based correspondence course
  • The web based online course

Traditional hands-on classes are recommended for those less familiar with trapping in Wisconsin.

The in-person field test-out requirement for the online and correspondence course has been suspended until Jan 1st 2021. Students of any age may take the online or correspondence course with the test-out requirement waived for 2020.

Anyone looking to trap in Wisconsin must complete our trapper education course. If you trapped in Wisconsin prior to 1992, have taken a comparable course in another state or are actively engaged in farming you may qualify for an exemption.

Individuals under the age of 10 should contact the lead instructor for approval to take his or her class.


Trapper education classes are $12. The correspondence course requires an additional and refundable deposit for class materials; overnight classes may have additional costs.


Registration is required

To enroll in the online or correspondence course contact the online and correspondence course coordinator Mike Widner at When contacting the coordinator, please be specific as to which course type you are interested in. If you have questions you can call Mike at 608-356-3621. All Wisconsin recreational safety students are required to obtain a Wisconsin DNR Customer ID Number when registering for a safety education class and must provide that number to their instructor - see Get a DNR customer ID in sidebar.

Class schedule

Students must complete and pass all homework assignments and the course exam to finish the online or correspondence courses. Trapper education instructors are trappers themselves and so have limited availability during trapping season, please plan accordingly.

Sign up for the online or correspondence course by contacting the online and correspondence course coordinator. Then follow these steps:

  • Read the WCTEP student manual
  • Read and view supplemental materials.
  • Complete the homework assignments and send completed homework to the online and correspondence coordinator.
  • You will typically receive your results within 1 to 2 weeks of submission.
    • Failed homework will be sent back.
    • After passing all the homework assignments with a 70% or better, you will be sent the exam
  • Complete the exam and send the completed exam to the online and correspondence course coordinator.
  • Results will typically be sent back in 1 to 2 weeks. A certificate of completion will be sent with the results if you passed with an 85% or better.

WCTEP Student Manual

Download the WCTEP trapper education student manual using the three Unit links below. Instructors may assign pre-class homework from the WCTEP student manual and the supplemental educational materials.

Students taking an in-person trapper education class will receive a hard copy of the student manual during class. Students in the online course may request a hardcopy of the student manual by contacting the DNR trapper education coordinator.

Supplemental materials

Trapper ethics


Wisconsin's Cooperative Trapper Education Program is administered jointly by the Wisconsin Trappers Association (WTA) [exit DNR] and the DNR.