New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Media contact: Dan Williams, (505) 476-8004
Public contact: (505) 476-8000
dan.williams@state.nm.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, FEB. 20, 2007:

HUNTER EDUCATION WEEKEND BRINGS CLASSES TO COMMUNITIES STATEWIDE

SANTA FE - Hunters who need to complete a Hunter Education Course in time to apply for upcoming drawings for deer, elk and other special hunts will have opportunities to attend classes March 10-11 in more than 30 communities statewide.

By law, any person under age 18 must have successfully completed the New Mexico Hunter Education Course or an approved course from another state before buying or applying for any type of firearm hunting license in New Mexico . Youths under 18 must carry a hunter education certification card while hunting. Colorado and some other states require almost everyone to have hunter education certification.

In New Mexico , hunters must meet the hunter education requirements by the April 7, 2007, application deadline to be eligible for the 2007-2008 drawings for deer, elk, antelope, ibex, javelina and bighorn sheep hunts.

The Department of Game and Fish soon will be accepting registrations now for courses in more than 30 communities across the state. The standard course is 16 hours, usually conducted from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. There is no minimum age restriction, but the course is designed for youths ages 11 and older. The course is not required for bow hunters, although young bow hunters are encouraged to take it. Students ages 10 and under must be accompanied by an adult during the entire course.

New Mexico 's Hunter Education Program has certified more than 156,000 students since the training was first required in 1976. The course focuses on firearms safety, but has changed considerably over the years, with the additions of instruction about bow hunting, survival, game care, wildlife identification and hunter responsibility.

To find a Hunter Education Training Course in your area, and for details on times, dates, places and specific pre-registration instructions, please visit the Department website, www.wildlife.state.nm.us and click on the "Education" tab, visit the International Hunter Education Association website, www.huntcourse.net , or call the Department of Game and Fish at (505) 222-4731.

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