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Sign up now for a hunter safety course

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reminds hunters that it is never too early to sign up for a hunter safety course. In general, anyone born after Dec. 31, 1979, needs a firearms certificate to hunt game with a firearm in Minnesota.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reminds hunters that it is never too early to sign up for a hunter safety course. In general, anyone born after Dec. 31, 1979, needs a firearms certificate to hunt game with a firearm in Minnesota.

“Many people fail to consider enrolling in a course until the weather turns cool in late September,” said Acting Capt. Jon Paurus, DNR education program coordinator. “Unfortunately, most courses have either begun or are full by then, and the opportunity to hunt during the fall may be diminished.”

Classes are offered in a traditional classroom setting or online.

The firearms safety classroom course includes at least 12 hours of classroom instruction and a field day, which teaches the safe handling of firearms and hunter responsibility. The field day allows students to learn and demonstrate commonly accepted principles of safety in hunting and handling of firearms. It includes live fire on a rifle range.

The online course is not intended to replace traditional classroom instruction, but does give another option for students. It provides the same information as the classroom course for youth and adults interested in learning more about hunting.

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“Today’s students are computer savvy, so online training is just part of the DNR’s evolving firearms safety education program,” Paurus said.

Once the online examination is passed, students attend a field day where they apply what they have learned in a series of hunting scenarios testing firearms safety, safe hunting skills and tree stand safety.

“It’s online training, but the course still heavily depends on the human interaction and guidance provided by dedicated, experienced volunteer instructors during the field day,” Paurus said.

Field days are limited and hunter safety classes fill-up fast. Find a class by visiting www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/firearms/index.html , or by calling 651-296-6157 or 888-646-6367.

Related Topics: HUNTING
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