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Mandatory Harvest Information Program (HIP)

If you are licensed to hunt migratory birds (ducks, coots, geese, doves, woodcock, rails, snipe, or gallinules), you must get a Harvest Information Program certification and carry proof of your HIP certification with you whenever you’re hunting migratory birds. If you are age 17 or under, you do not need a HIP certification. You must get HIP certified in every state you hunt migratory birds.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service uses HIP to estimate the number of active migratory bird hunters and migratory bird species harvested in each state each year. The USFWS selects a random sample of HIP-certified migratory bird hunters and sends them a request to participate in a voluntary survey. Survey questions include which species you hunted and how many you harvested. Based on the species and your previous years’ survey responses, you may receive a request to send in a wing each harvested duck, dove, or woodcock, or a wingtip and tail feather from each harvested goose. Biologists use data from these surveys to determine the effect of hunting regulations on harvest levels and evaluate the ratio of young birds to adult birds in the harvest to determine recruitment rates (young surviving to enter the adult population). Managers use this information to set hunting seasons and bag limits.


How do I get HIP-certified?

Get your HIP certification online or at LDWF Headquarters at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge. No course or test is required; simply answer a few short registration questions.

HIP certification is no longer available at retail license vendors because of poor compliance with asking registration questions and thus providing invalid information on migratory bird species hunted and relative success needed for selecting hunters for harvest surveys. As part of a multi-state pilot study coordinated by the Wildlife Management Institute to address invalid registration data, LDWF has limited HIP certification to online or in-person at LDWF headquarters in Baton Rouge.

How much does HIP certification cost?

HIP certification is free.

What if I have a lifetime license?

You still must get HIP-certified every year. You can get your HIP certification online or at LDWF Headquarters at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge.

Steps for Getting Your HIP Certification Online

  1. Go to our licensing site.
  2. Click on HIP Certification (under Licenses & Permits, the center tile on the top row).
  3. If you’ve previously purchased a Louisiana hunting license, on the Login/Create Account page in the left-hand column (Existing Customers), click on the arrow in the blank box to select a method to log into your account. Then type in your information and click Search Accounts.
  4. If you have never purchased a Louisiana hunting license, on the Login/Create Account page in the right-hand column (First Time Customers), click Create Account.
  5. On the Customer Details page, complete and/or check all of your information. Be sure to add an email address if you have not previously provided one. Then click Next.
  6. On the Licenses & Permits tile (center tile on the top row), click Purchase.
  7. On the Are you a Louisiana Resident page, select whether you are a Louisiana resident, select the box that “I hereby declare that all information provided is true and correct”, and then click Next.
  8. On the Choose Product(s) page, click on the Hunting tab on the left to go to the page with HIP Certification. Click on every license that you would like to buy, then click Checkout. If you have a Lifetime License or already bought a license, clicking HIP Certification will direct you to the HIP registration questions. When answering the HIP registration questions, click on the arrow in each box and tell us whether you hunted and killed 0, 1-10, 11+, or did not hunt for every species. Then click Continue.
  9. On the Checkout page, you can edit your purchases, make a donation to Hunters for the Hungry, and enter your payment information. When finished, click Submit Payment.
  10. On the Sales Receipt page, you will have options—to Download License(s), View License(s) in Browser, or Print Receipt. If you have an email on file, your license(s) are emailed to you automatically. Select the method you prefer (you can select more than one), and you’re done!

Getting your HIP certification online is a lot easier when you are actually doing it than these instructions make it sound, but it is a lot of clicking. Please share these instructions with anyone who might be having trouble with getting their HIP certification online.