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Mississippi’s Hunter Education Program

Hunter Education works. Since 1950, when formal hunter safety programs were introduced, the number of hunting and firearms-related accidents has declined dramatically nationwide. In Mississippi, we know that our hunter education efforts have reduced firearms accidents and saved lives. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks offers hunter education classes free of charge at numerous locations across the state. The hunter education course includes ten (10) hours of instruction, including time on firing range. Students must be ten (10) years old prior to December thirty-first (31) of the year of the class, must attend all course hours, must score 70 or greater on the written exam, and must complete firing exercise to acquire hunter education certification.

All persons born after January 1, 1972 are required to complete a Hunter Education course before purchasing a Mississippi hunting license. Also effective July 1, 2000, anyone twelve (12) years of age and under sixteen (16) years of age must have a certificate of satisfactory completion of a hunter education course approved by the Department before hunting alone in this state. A child at least twelve (12) years of age and under (16) years of age may hunt without having the certificate of hunter education if the child is in the presence and under the direct supervision of a licensed or exempt hunter at least twenty-one (21) years of age when hunting. For information on license requirements and hunter education requirements see “License Information” on pages 10-12.

Hunter Education courses are typically held in each county during the late summer, fall, and winter months. Courses are taught by employees of the department or by certified volunteer instructors. Most Hunter Education courses are held on Saturday; however, some classes may be divided into multiple days. Updated Hunter Education course schedules are available in August of each year at Schedule date, time, or location is subject to change, so it is important to call and verify in advance prior to attending the course.

Hunter Education courses are also offered online. However, the online course is not intended to replace the traditional classroom course, but is designed to work within the established course curriculum and allow the Hunter Education certification to be obtained throughout the year. Upon completing the online exam, the student then must complete the final three hours within a classroom setting. This allows the student time to interact with the instructor, and complete final testing, and range firing exercises. The last three hours of the online hunter education course is available at any of the regional offices each week or at pre-determined times during the hunter education class held in each county. Please call one of our regional offices to sign up to finish the online hunter education class.

The Hunter Education program is designed to:

  • teach hunter ethics and responsibility
  • reduce hunting accidents
  • promote wildlife conservation
  • teach firearm safety

Specifically, the course contents include:

  • hunter ethics and responsibility
  • history of firearms
  • types of firearms
  • types of ammunition
  • safe gun handling
  • fundamentals of marksmanship
  • bowhunting skills
  • wildlife identification
  • principles of wildlife management
  • basic survival skills
  • water safety
  • dangers of hypothermia
  • first aid fundamentals
  • tree stand safety guidelines

For more information about a hunter education class, or to replace a hunter education card, contact:

 MDWFP, Hunter Education Division
1505 Eastover Drive
Jackson, MS 39211-6374

1-800-354-5033 or call your Regional Office*

*See the region map on General WMA Information for the phone number of the regional office nearest you.

MDWFP offers the Hunter Education course online. Visit
for more information.

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Conservation Partner Advertisements: The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks allows appropriate advertising in its annual regulation guides in print and online, in order to defray or eliminate expenses to the state, and support enhanced communications with Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Constituents. Through a unique partnership with J.F.Griffin Publishing, LLC &, ‘Conservation Partners’ have been established that pay for advertising in support of the regulations both in print and online. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks neither endorses products or services listed or claims made; nor accepts any liability arising from the use of products or services listed. Advertisers interested in the Conservation Partners program should contact J.F.Griffin/ directly at 413-884-1001,
J.F. Griffin reaches 20 million sportsmen every year through our print and digital publications. We produce 47 hunting and fishing regulation guides for 22 state agencies.
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