Manitoba Hunter Education
By Amanda Boni, MWF Staff
Hunter Education remains an important part of continuing our hunting heritage. The program teaches new hunters (and some seasoned ones too!) the importance of ethics and responsibilities, laws and regulations, ecology and wildlife management, survival skills, field techniques and firearm safety. In 2010 we saw 3,172 graduates of this program and at the end of November 2011 we have had 3,459 graduates. We anticipate that number to increase by another 100 by the end of 2011.
The Hunter Education program is offered throughout Manitoba in two ways. The traditional eight hour classroom course offers students a chance to view live demonstrations and interact with their instructors. The online course offered through huntercourse.com offers the student the convenience of working through the program material at their own pace. A visit to a certified provincial instructor is required once the online portion of the course is completed to have final testing done. You can check out www.mwf.mb.ca/programs-3/online-hunter-education to see if there are online instructors available in your area of the province. Keep in mind you may have to travel to another town or city for your testing if there is not an instructor directly in your community.
With recent changes to Manitoba legislation regarding the purchase of hunting licences in the province this year a quick review of the hunter education requirements and other hunting related requirements may be helpful to answer some of your questions. As of January 1, 2012 all hunters will be required to produce a Hunter Education Certificate or card when purchasing any type of hunting licence.
What course do I need? To qualify for a hunting licence, any person born after January 1, 1951 and any first-time hunter must be a graduate of the Manitoba Hunter Education Course or a similar education course from another province or state. The federal Canadian Firearms Safety Course does not meet this requirement.
How old do I need to be? A person must be at least 12 years of age to purchase a hunting licence or qualify for the youth hunting provision. We will accept students into our Hunter Education class who are within 3 months of their 12th birthday, however, the hunter education card is not issued until he/she turns 12.
Where and when are classes offered? The Manitoba Hunter Education Course is available in almost every community across Manitoba, usually in late summer or early fall, or all year round in larger communities.
The Manitoba Hunter Education Manual is available online here and reading the manual prior to the class is recommended.
Once I qualify or pass the Manitoba Hunter Education Course, do I need any other courses in order to hunt? No, a person hunting under the direct supervision (within armís reach) of an adult with a valid firearms licence does not need any other courses or a federal firearms licence. However, anyone wishing to hunt away from the direct supervision of an adult with a firearms licence needs a Federal Firearms Licence (Possession Acquisition Licence or Minorís Possession Licence).
What do I need to bring with me when I buy my hunting licence? As of January 1, 2012 all hunters, youth and adults will be required to produce a Hunter Education Certificate or card when purchasing any type of licence. Your Hunter Education Certificate or card can be from Manitoba or another province or state. Again, the Canadian Firearms Safety Course or your Federal Firearms Licence does not meet this requirement.
I have lost my Manitoba Hunter Education Certificate. How do I get a replacement? The Manitoba Wildlife Federation can issue replacement Hunter Education Cards and is pleased to be able to provide this service. To order a new Hunter Education Card please call us at 204-633-4868 in Winnipeg or toll free in Manitoba at 1-877-633-4868. Please have the following information ready when you call: last name (ladies may need their maiden name), first name, middle initial(s), birth date, approximate year course was taken, and where you were living at the time you took the course. There is a minimum charge for replacement cards: $15.00 per card for MWF members and $25.00 per card for non-MWF members.
For further information on Hunter Education please contact the Manitoba Wildlife Federation at 204-633-4868 or toll free in Manitoba at 1-877-633-4868. You can also visit us online at www.mwf.mb.ca.
Hunting Laws and Regulations Basic wildlife regulations for hunting in Manitoba can be found in the Hunting Guide available where you purchase your hunting licence. Regulation changes occur every year, so it is important that you read and understand the information provided every year. The Manitoba Hunting Guide is also available on-line here.
What do I need to legally own a firearm? In order for you to legally own a firearm, you must be 18 years of age or older and have one of the following firearms licences: 1. A Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) 2. A Possession Only Licence (POL)
The PAL allows you to own, borrow, buy, receive as a gift, or inherit firearms and to buy ammunition. The POL allows you to own and borrow firearms and to buy ammunition, but not acquire firearms. Currently the only firearms licences one can apply for are the non-restricted and restricted Possession and Acquisition Licences.
To qualify for the non-restricted (hunting type firearms) Possession and Acquisition Licence, you must show proof of having successfully completed the Manitoba Hunter Education course prior to April 1, 1994 or the non-restricted Canadian Firearms Safety Course or the Canadian Firearms Safety Course test challenge.
If you are between the ages of 12 - 17, you may apply for a Minorís Possession Licence. Minors can qualify for a Minorís Licence to possess a non-restricted firearm for the purpose of hunting, target shooting or to transport a firearm to and from a shooting range provided they have successfully completed the Canadian Firearms Safety Course. A minorís licence is not required if the youth (ages 12 - 17) is under the direct supervision of an adult who is qualified to have a firearm in his/her possession.
For further information on Firearms Licencing please contact the Canadian Firearms Center at 1-800-731-4000.
Whether you are new to hunting or a seasoned hunter remember that these rules and regulations are out there to protect you, the wildlife, and the much loved pastime of hunting.
If you are new to hunting and firearms the Manitoba Wildlife Federation provides programming just for you. Mentored hunts are held in the fall for Waterfowl and Deer. The mentors are experienced hunters who have a wealth of knowledge that they are willing to share. They volunteer their time to show newcomers how to prepare for the hunt as well as assist them during the hunt. Participants of a mentored hunt take part in safety and familiarization exercises before the hunting begins and after the hunt they will learn how to process the game.
Becoming an Outdoors-Woman is a hands-on outdoor skills workshop designed specially for women 18 years of age and older who want to learn outdoors skills including hunting, fishing and many non-consumptive outdoor activities. It is a great way to learn new skills or improve on old ones in an environment with patient, knowledgeable instructors.
For more information on these programs and the Manitoba Wildlife Federation visit us at www.mwf.mb.ca.