With big game hunting applications open this month, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department is announcing open hunter education classes for 2019.

According to the department, hunter education is required in Wyoming for all hunters born after 1965. There is no minimum age for taking hunter education in Wyoming, and there are course exemptions for active and former military or law enforcement. 

The department says classes are offered statewide and are scheduled January through March.

“Taking a class early gives you time before hunting season to practice with your firearm or bow and learn more skills before your first hunt.” Wyoming Game and Fish Department hunter education coordinator George Oberstadt said in a release. “The major purpose of hunter education is to promote safe and ethical hunting while teaching skills that will prevent hunting and firearm-related accidents. The course enhances knowledge about the tradition of hunting and focuses on hunting responsibilities.”

The department is providing online courses for those who can’t make a regular course or want to work at their own pace. Online courses require one field day attendance to earn a hunter education certification.

Wyoming also offers a hunter mentor program which allows a potential hunter who has yet to earn their hunter education certification to hunt while accompanied by a mentor. This provides the opportunity to experience a hunt before committing to the hunter education coursework.

The department says certification from other states is permitted, but providing proof of experience in the field is still required.

Classes for the Laramie area are currently scheduled for Jan. 8 through Jan. 29, Jan. 26, and March 2. Online courses for Laramie are scheduled for Jan. 19, June 29, and July 20.

The department says they are always looking for qualified volunteers to help teach courses. Candidates can send an email detailing their interest to wgfhuntered@wyo.gov.