Department Offers Hunting and Trapping Courses
Winter in New Brunswick is the perfect time to enroll in one of a number of Conservation Education courses available throughout the province.
The Department of Natural Resources and its network of about 400 dedicated volunteer instructors currently offer Firearm Safety/Hunter Education, Bow Hunter Education and Trapper Education Courses. A Nuisance Wildlife Control Operators course is also available for those interested in providing nuisance wildlife control services to the public.
Who should take the courses and why?
The Firearm Safety/Hunter Education (FS/HE), Bow Hunter Education, and Trapper Education Courses are mandatory for first time hunters and trappers, all bow hunters, as well as all persons born on, or after, after Jan. 1, 1981 in order for them meet provincial licensing requirements.
The Firearm Safety component of the FS/HE course is required under federal law to obtain a Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) to own, borrow, inherit, or purchase a firearm or to purchase ammunition.
Youth and adults are welcome and must be at least 10 years of age to participate in the Trapper Education course; 13 for the FS/HE and Bow Hunter Education Courses.
Conservation Education Courses offered in NB also meet the training requirements of other provinces and states when purchasing their hunting licences.
How are courses offered?
Courses are offered through local DNR offices. Depending on the location, they may be held at the DNR office itself or at some other suitable facility within the community.
Most courses are classroom based and include opportunity for hands-on learning. A typical Firearm Safety/Hunter Education Course consists of five to six evening sessions scheduled over a two-week period. Trapper and Bow Hunter Education Courses are about 10 hours in length and are usually completed in a single weekend.
Home Study and challenge options also exist for the Firearm Safety/Hunter Education and Bow courses.
Some courses are followed up by a field day where participants have the opportunity for hands-on learning activities.
When do the courses take place?
Courses are offered throughout the year, but the majority are held in the winter and fall months.
A course schedule is available online at http://www.gnb.ca/0078/fw/Huntered/index-e.asp.
Course fees vary from $40 to $100, depending on the type of course and the participant's age when the course is offered. Student manuals are $10.70 each.
Youth 16 years of age or younger can participate in the Firearm Safety/Hunter Education, Bow Hunter, and Trapper courses for $40, and have their student manuals provided free through a program funded by the Wildlife Trust Fund.
Where to get more information
Client Services Program, Fish and Wildlife Branch, Department of Natural Resources, Fredericton, N.B., 506-453 2440, fax, 506-453-6699.
Visit the Department of Natural Resources, Client Services web site at: http://www.gnb.ca/0078/fw/Huntered/index-e.asp or the nearest Natural Resources office.