Tags: Gun Control | hunting in alaska

Hunting in Alaska: Are Safety Courses Required to Hunt in Alaska? How Do I Pass Classes?

By    |   Friday, 22 May 2015 11:53 AM

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game offers classes that seek to educate the public on wildlife conservation, safety techniques, and hunting ethics. In addition, these classes often play an important role in different kinds of certifications. Following are some courses that are required to gain specific certifications. 

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1. Basic Hunter Education Course
In Alaska, successful graduation from a Basic Hunter Education Course ensures lifetime certification in all 50 states, plus Mexico and Canada. This course is required for hunters born after 1986 who plan to hunt many regions of the southwest and south-central (specifically units 7, 13-15, and 20 on the Alaska Department of Fish and Game's game management regions map) parts of the state, in addition to many management and refuge areas.

According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the course teaches firearm safety, wildlife conservation techniques, and the importance of respect for landowners, other hunters, and the environment. The Department of Fish and Game claims that this course has dramatically reduced firearm accidents and has greatly improved hunters' skills. There are three course options: the first option is a traditional multi-day course; the second option is a independent study course plus a field day; and the third option is an online course and examination plus a half field day.

2. Bowhunter Education Course
A Bowhunter Education Course is required of anyone who wishes to hunt in hunting areas that only allow bowhunting. As of July 2016, all big game hunters using archery must complete the course. According to the Department of Fish and Game, more than 800 Alaskans become certified bowhunters each year. The Bowhunter Education Course is similar to the Basic Hunter Education Course, but with bowhunting-specific information. In addition to the instruction portions of the course, hunters are required to pass a shooting proficiency class.

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Students may take complete a traditional course, which combines classroom instruction with field work and the shooting proficiency examination; alternately, students may complete the online version of the course, which combines online instruction and examinations with a field day and the proficiency shoot.

3. Muzzleloader Hunter Certification Course
Required of hunters shooting in areas that only allow muzzleloaders, Alaska's Muzzleloader Hunter Certification Courses gives students live experience with muzzleloaders as well as black power, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. In addition, the course covers ballistic information and shot placement, general firearm safety, and conservation techniques, and hunting ethics. To pass the class, the student must disassemble, clean, and reassemble a muzzleloader. In addition, there are live fire exercises and a written examination. The traditional course option combines classroom work with a field day while the online course option combines online information and examinations with a half field day.

This article is for information only. Please check current regulations before hunting.

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The Alaska Department of Fish and Game offers classes that seek to educate the public on wildlife conservation, safety techniques, and hunting ethics.
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