The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is offering an online hunter education course for students who will be at least 12 years old on or before Dec. 31.
With most in-person hunter education classes canceled this spring because of the coronavirus pandemic, the department needed to find a way to get students certified for hunter education this year, said Marty Egeland, education supervisor for Game and Fish in Bismarck.
“And with most classes held before the deer application deadline, we had to adjust the way we administer our classes,” Egeland said. The deer application deadline generally is in early June.
The online course is available to students who were already enrolled in classes that were canceled and also to qualifying students who were not previously enrolled in a class. A 25% discount is being offered for taking the online course.
Students who were already enrolled in a 2020 class that was canceled do not have to register with Game and Fish again. They will automatically receive an email with instructions to start the online course.
Prospective students who had not previously registered can sign up through the Game and Fish website, gf.nd.gov. After signing up for the class, students will receive an email with further relevant information and instructions. The online portion of the class must be completed within two weeks of signup.
For both pre-registered and new students, when the online hunter education course and an accompanying virtual field day are completed, a temporary hunter education number will be provided, which will allow lottery applications and license purchases in 2020.
Each student then will have until Dec. 31, 2020, to attend one in-person class session, to take the official North Dakota Game and Fish Department hunter education written and practical exams. If that is not completed by the end of the year, the temporary hunter education number will expire, and the student will have to retake the course in the future.
Game and Fish will notify students when dates and locations are established for these final class sessions.
Apprentice license option
Another option for anyone who wants to hunt in North Dakota this fall is a one-time exemption called an apprentice license. Individuals who are at least 12 years old by the end of the calendar year, and who have not previously had an apprentice license, can apply for one and use that to purchase 2020 licenses without a hunter education number. An apprentice license holder must then complete the official hunter education course before being able to purchase hunting licenses in future years.