Rockingham - Harrisonburg Chapter
Kris Dougherty - Conservation Police Officer, Region 4 Hunter Education Coordinator
Since the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries instituted its’ Hunter Education Program, over 515,000 hunters have taken the course. The course is mandatory for new hunters between the ages of 12-15 and for anyone that has never held a hunting license before, regardless of their age. In recent years the incident rate of hunting fatalities and injuries has decreased significantly, largely due to hunter education.
The course is mandated by law to be a minimum of 10 hours long. In those 10 hours students are taught a variety of subjects including, but not limited to, safe firearms handling, treestand safety, ethics, wildlife conservation and management, survival, first aid, and map and compass. The course is taught using lecture, video, power point programs and hands on demonstrations.
Persons wanting or needing to take a course can find a course near them by going to the Game Department’s web site, www.dgif.virginia.gov and clicking on education. For those without internet access wishing to find a course near them, they can call 1-804-367-1000.
The Hunter Education Program is always looking for volunteer instructors to teach hunter education. If you are interested in becoming an instructor, please contact Sergeant David Dodson at 540-899-4169 or by e-mail or the regional coordinator for the Shenandoah Valley, Officer Kris Dougherty at 540-248-9360 or by e-mail.