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Hunter Education - Frequently Asked Questions

Monday, September 15, 2014 

  1. How are Idaho hunter and bowhunter education programs funded?
    The state receives funding for hunter education through the Pittman-Robertson Act. Idaho receives a portion of the excise tax dollars which are collected on the sale of firearms, archery equipment and ammunition throughout the United States. As a result students only pay a nominal $8.00 fee to cover the cost of course materials.
  2. Who must complete a hunter education course to obtain an Idaho Hunting License?
    Idaho law requires that anyone born after January 1, 1975 complete an approved hunter education course to purchase an Idaho hunting license unless the person has held a valid hunting license in Idaho or another state or the person has proof of completion of an approved hunter education course from another state. (Idaho Code Chapter 4, Title 36-411).
  3. How many hunter education students are certified annually?
    Over 12, 000 Idaho hunter education students are certified annually by more than 850 experienced and knowledgeable volunteer instructors.
  4. How many bowhunter education students are certified annually?
    More than 3,000 Idaho bowhunter education students are certified annually by approximately 225 experienced and knowledgeable bowhunter volunteer instructors.
  5. How long is the Idaho Hunter Education Course and what topics are covered?
    The traditional classroom course is approximately 20 hours in length and includes a range and live-fire exercise. Topics covered include safe handling and operation of firearms, ammunition, archery and various hunting equipment, hunter responsibilities and ethics, wildlife management and conservation, hunting regulations, and other related information.
  6. What is the minimum age to enroll in an Idaho Hunter Education Course?
    Nine years old. They must meet the knowledge and skill standards outlined in the course curriculum to receive their course certificate. However, course graduates will not be able to purchase a hunting license until their tenth birthday.
  7. What are my options for completing the Idaho Hunter Education Course?
    Successful completion of the instructor-led or the independent study course will meet the hunter education course requirement to obtain an Idaho hunting license.
  8. Is there an online option for completing hunter or bowhunter education?
    Yes, the internet option is available for students 10 years old and above. Following completion of the online course, students must also attend a 6-7 hour field day to receive their certification.
  9. Will other states honor my Idaho Hunter Education Certificate?
    By mutual agreement, using the International Hunter Education Association standards, all other 49 states and most Canadian provinces that require hunter education accept the Idaho course to meet their requirement.
  10. Who must complete a bowhunter education course?
    To purchase an archery-only permit in Idaho, all bow hunters must show proof they have completed the Idaho Bowhunter Education Course, or an approved bowhunter education course from another state, or show evidence of being previously licensed for an archery-only hunt in Idaho or another state.
  11. How long is the Idaho Bowhunter Education Course and what topics are covered?
    The bowhunter course averages about 12 hours. Topics include bowhunting techniques, ethics, shot selection and placement, the blood trail, safety, tree stands, and understanding your individual limitations and abilities.
  12. How do I become a hunter or bowhunter education instructor?
    Please see the qualifications to become an instructor.
  13. If I am only interested in bowhunting do I need to complete a hunter education course first?
    Yes, if you were born after January 1, 1975, you must successfully complete a hunter education course to obtain a hunting license unless you have previously held a valid hunting license in Idaho or another state.
Last Updated: June 30, 2011 
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