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Contact: Lt. Jon King, DNR Hunter Education Administrator or 608-575-2294

Get Ready For Hunting Season: Take A Hunter Safety Course

MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) encourages all hunters to complete a safety course before enjoying Wisconsin’s fields and forests this hunting season. By completing your hunter safety course or quick skills refresh, you play a vital role in keeping Wisconsin a safe place to hunt.

More than 20,000 people take hunter education courses in Wisconsin each year. Anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1973, must have a hunter education certification to purchase a hunting license unless hunting under the Mentored Hunting Law

It’s easy and exciting to become involved in this outdoor activity. Now through Oct. 1, hunters of all ages may complete their safety course online or in-person. Here are the ways to get a hunter education certification:

Online students should expect to spend multiple hours online studying and completing the course modules. A passing score on the final exam is necessary to be certified. The online course is best for someone experienced with handling firearms safely or who has access to a reliable mentor.

If a hands-on method is your preference, there are two other ways to complete and strengthen your safety skills:

Online Only:

Course participants spend multiple hours studying and completing modules online. A passing score on the final exam is necessary to be certified. This option is a great fit for students that have a connection/mentorship within the shooting sports to help establish and strengthen their skills and lessons learned. All ages are welcome. 

Online + Field Day:

This training allows you to complete training both online and in-person with one day of training with a certified instructor. This class is a good fit for a person who has handled firearms or is planning to hunt with someone with more experience to learn from. During this class, there are 4 to 8 hours of gun 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 at this venue also enhances student learning. All age groups are welcome.

Before enrolling in any course, those interested must first obtain a Wisconsin Customer ID number.

For more information on course options, links to enroll and cost, visit the DNR webpage here.