From the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department
-- It’s summer school time for would-be hunters.
With hunting seasons just around the corner, the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is urging new hunters to sign up now for a hunter education class. Anyone who has never taken the course or had a hunting license from any state must take the course before obtaining a hunting license.
"Though classes are held throughout the year, their numbers peak now through early fall,” said Hunter Education Coordinator Chris Saunders. “This is the time to sign up for a course, because once the hunting season gets rolling, our volunteer instructors want to be out in the field. Taking the class sooner, rather than later also means more time for scouting, sighting-in and getting permission to hunt on private lands.”
To find an open class, go to http://www.vtfishandwildlife.com/HE_Courses.cfm. The list is updated frequently, so check often. You can also call the hunter education office at (802) 241-3700.
Vermont hunter education course averages 12-14 hours of classroom instruction and field exercises. Each course is taught by trained, certified volunteer instructors who follow national guidelines and state standards. Safe firearms handling, hunter responsibility, conservation, wildlife identification, outdoor safety, turkey hunting, muzzleloading and survival are all covered. Some volunteer instructors offer courses that include bowhunter education while others teach separate courses for bowhunter, as well as trapper education.
The department recognizes courses can be difficult to fit into the hectic schedules of today's fast-moving lifestyles. As a result, a home-study option is available for the basic hunter education course. This home-study course lets you learn the material at your own pace. A field day, involving a written exam and field skills testing, is still required.
Each year, the Vermont Hunter Education Program’s 350 volunteer instructors certify almost 6,000 students. The free courses provided by the department are entirely funded by hunters and shooters through the Federal Aid in Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program.