If your sights are set on hunting this fall, and you still need to complete Idaho’s hunter education requirement, Idaho Fish and Game official say spring is a great time because more courses are offered and space is often available.
“Courses are taught by volunteer instructors who, just like their students, want to put down the books and pick up a firearm in the fall,” says Brenda Beckley, Hunter Education and Recruitment Manager. “Although there may be courses available in the fall, the best time to take a course is January through August.”
Plenty of opportunities are available now in both the instructor-led classes and in the field days required to complete certification. “Waiting until fall is not a good idea because courses fill very quickly and not as many are offered,” says Beckley.
Three course options are available. An instructor-led course is considered the best option for youth ages nine to 14, and for individuals having minimal hunting experience. Other options for hunter education include an online and a workbook course. Both of these courses are designed for older students with excellent reading comprehension. While convenient and allowing much of the course to be taken at home, both courses require students to register for and attend a field day, where a field exercise and written exam are given.
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Hunter education is required in Idaho for all hunters born on or after January 1, 1975, unless they have held a valid hunting license from Idaho or another state. The major purpose is the prevention of hunting and firearm related accidents, but emphasis is also placed on improving knowledge about the heritage of hunting and developing a sense of ethics and responsibility.