Hunter and Trapper Education
Mandatory Hunter Education
We encourage every hunter to take a hunter education course. However, if you were born on or after September 1, 1969, you must satisfactorily complete an LDWF-approved hunter education course and receive Hunter Education Certification prior to hunting in Louisiana, unless you are under direct supervision of a qualified person. (A qualified person is a Louisiana licensed hunter born before September 1, 1969, or a person 18 years of age or older who has a valid unrestricted Louisiana hunting license or proof of Hunter Education Certification. Direct supervision means the person being supervised is within normal audible voice contact and in direct line of sight of the supervising person at all times while hunting.)
You must be at least 10 years old to receive Hunter Education Certification in Louisiana. However, even certified 10- and 11-year-olds must be supervised while hunting. Youth younger than 10 may take the course, but they are not eligible to be certified and will have to retake the course to obtain certification when they reach 10 years of age or older.
Hunter education is available to everyone, regardless of race, sex, age, or national origin.
Your Louisiana Hunter Education Certification is valid for life.
Take an LDWF-Approved Hunter Education Course
The goal of Louisiana’s Hunter Education Course is to prevent hunting incidents and ensure the future of hunting by teaching hunters about their responsibilities and roles in conservation. The course covers firearm and hunting safety, wildlife management principles, ethics, game identification, and outdoor survival. LDWF staff and volunteer instructors teach hunter education. Volunteers undergo background checks and receive training and oversight from LDWF staff.
You can take Louisiana’s Hunter Education Course in the classroom or online (with an additional field day component).
- 10-hour course usually held over 2 or 3 days
- Suitable for all ages
- Instructors can accommodate students with reading or learning disabilities; please notify the instructor of special needs at least two weeks before the class begins.
- Most classroom courses require advance registration. Register for a classroom course online or by calling one of our Wildlife Field Offices.
Online with field day:
- An approved online course that you can take at any time at your own pace, but you must complete this course prior to attending a field day. You will receive a voucher confirming you have completed the online course.
- The course fee is $19.95, paid to the online course provider.
- A 5-hour field day course (after you complete the approved online course). You must bring your voucher showing that you have completed the online course. Register for a field day course online or by calling one of our Wildlife Field Offices. Note that you have one full calendar year (365 days) after you complete the online course to complete a field day course.
- Recommended only for students 14 years of age and older.
Students must successfully complete an in-person written test and live-fire exercise with both course formats. LDWF provides firearms and ammunition for the live-fire exercise so students should not bring their own.
Upon successful completion of either format, students will receive temporary Hunter Education Certification credentials. They will receive their permanent certification via email (at the address provided during registration). Students can also print their cards via their LDWF account. Log into your account online, select View Your Certifications, then select Get Your Certificate.
Military and Police Exemptions
If you are an active or veteran member of the U.S. Armed Forces or a POST-certified law enforcement officer, you may be exempted from Louisiana’s hunter education requirements. To apply for this exemption, download and complete a Military/Police Hunter Education Exemption application then submit your application and required documents:
- In person at LDWF Headquarters at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge or at most field offices
- Via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Via fax to 225.763.5447
- Via mail to: LDWF Education Program, PO Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898.
If your exemption is granted, remember that this exemption is valid in Louisiana only. For more information, call 225.765.2932.
Other States’ Hunter Education Requirements
Hunters planning hunting trips to other states should check the hunter education requirements of their destination state well in advance of their trip as other states’ requirements differ. For instance, hunters traveling to Colorado must have hunter education certification if they were born on or after January 1, 1949. All states and Canadian provinces honor Louisiana’s Hunter Education Certification.
Hunter Education Endorsement
Next time you renew your driver’s license at the Office of Motor Vehicles, you can add a Hunter Education endorsement to your license for free. If you have this endorsement, you do not have to carry your Hunter Education Certification Card with you as long as you have your driver’s license.
Bowhunter education is not mandatory in Louisiana. However, LDWF offers a bowhunter education course to provide bowhunters with safety and skills training. Most classes require advance registration. View upcoming courses and register online.
Other states may require bowhunter education; be sure to check requirements before bowhunting in another state.
While trapper education is not mandatory in Louisiana, LDWF has partnered with the Louisiana Trappers and Alligator Hunters Association to offer free trapper education workshops to demonstrate trapping basics such as trap types and history, how to set traps, and how to handle them safely. Please see the Louisiana Fur Advisory Council for more information.
Before taking one of these hands-on workshops, we encourage you to take the Louisiana Level 1 Trapping Course, a free online course available on the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies' Conservation Learning Campus. This course is designed to allow each student to work at their convenience and their own pace.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need bowhunter education?
Bowhunter education is not mandatory in Louisiana. However, LDWF offers bowhunter education courses to provide bowhunters with safety and skills training. Most classes require advance registration. View upcoming courses and register online. Other states may require bowhunter education; be sure to check requirements before bowhunting in another state.
If I have a hunter education certification from another state, do I have to take Louisiana’s course?
No, Louisiana accepts all other states’ hunter education certifications.
Is it possible to fail Louisiana’s Hunter Education Course?
Yes, you must get a minimum score of 75% on the written test. You can also fail due to unsafe gun handling skills, disruptive behavior, or failure to attend the entire course.
What should I bring to the classroom or field day course?
All equipment and materials needed to complete the course are provided. Be sure to bring your voucher for your completed online course to the field day. Do not bring firearms or ammunition.
What do I need to hunt on federal lands?
If you’re hunting on federal lands (military bases, Kisatchie National Forest, national wildlife refuges, etc.), check the regulations specific to the area where you are hunting for hunter education and safety requirements. Federal lands may have requirements different from statewide regulations.