The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reminds anyone who hunts regularly, participates occasionally, or is new to the sport to prepare for hunting season by enrolling in a DNR Hunter Education course.
By taking your hunter safety course or getting a quick skills update, you play a vital role in making Wisconsin a safe place to hunt.
Most hunting incidents in Wisconsin involve hunters over the age of 40, decades after they learned gun safety rules in their hunter safety education classes. It may be time for veteran hunters to brush up on valuable lessons as the fall hunting season gets underway.
Adults 18 and older can complete their Hunter Education certification requirements completely online. The online student should expect to spend several hours online studying and completing course modules. A passing score on the final exam is required to be certified. The online course is ideal for people who have previous exposure to firearms training or who will have direct access to a trustworthy firearms mentor.
More than 20,000 attend hunter education courses in Wisconsin each year. Anyone born on or after January 1, 1973 must have a hunter training certificate to purchase a hunting license, unless they are hunting under the Supervised Hunting Act.
If you prefer a hands-on method, there are two other ways to supplement and strengthen your security skills.
- Online + Field Day: This training allows you to take online training and then attend a training day with a certified instructor. This course is ideal for someone who has handled firearms or is going to hunt with someone who has more experience to help the novice learn hunting skills. During this course, there are four to six hours of firearms training opportunities. All ages are welcome.
- Traditional class: This training offers a more practical approach to working with a certified instructor over a few days. Most students and families appreciate this option because they can do it in their community. This option provides students with the opportunity to handle hunting equipment, learn safe hunting practices, shoot, etc. In-person feedback from instructors on this site also enhances student learning. All age groups are welcome.
Before enrolling in a course, interested students must first obtain a Wisconsin Client Identification Number.
All course options, links to enroll and cost information are described on the MNR website.
2022 Deer Season Dates
Archery and crossbow * – September 17, 2022-Jan. 8, 2023
*No males can be harvested during antlerless hunts only
Archery and crossbow * – September 17, 2022-Jan. July 31, 2023
* Metropolitan and county sub-units with extended archery seasons
Gun Hunting for Hunters with Disabilities – October 1-9, 2022
Learn more here
Deer hunt for young people – October 8 and 9, 2022
Deer hunting – November 19 to 27, 2022
Muzzleloader – Nov. 28-Dec. 7, 2022
Statewide Antlerless Hunting – December 8-11, 2022
Antlerless Holiday Hunt Only* – Dec. 24 2022-Jan. 1, 2023
* Open only in certain farmland counties (Zone 2)