Officials with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife say that since most hunting seasons are over, now is the time to get kids into a hunter safety class.
Students interested in getting certified in hunter education by this fall's hunting season should sign up for a class now.
Authorities say classes are limited and most are scheduled from spring through late summer.
To see what classes are available in your area, you can go to ODFW's licensing sales website and click the "View all Classes/Workshops" link; then look at the "Hunter Ed Class" or "Hunter Ed Field Day" tabs.
Students may choose to take the hunter education course entirely in a classroom setting or on line.
Before getting certified, these independent study students must pass a required "Hunter Ed Field Day" that includes live fire exercises.
To register, students will need to purchase a $10 hunter education class application fee.
Hunter education is mandatory for all hunters under the age of 18, and recommended for any new hunter. The course covers topics like firearms safety, hunter ethics, wildlife identification, hunt preparation and techniques and outdoor survival.
The program certifies about 6,000 new hunters each year.
Classes are taught by ODFW's network of volunteer hunter education instructors. With most hunting seasons over, these volunteers are back to teaching classes, rather than out in the field.
For more information on hunter education you can visit the Hunter Education web page or call the program at 503-947-6028.