Apprentice Opportunities Help Engage New Hunters

Hunter recruitment is a hot-button issue throughout the industry. Everyone knows that fewer hunters mean less money available for conservation. To help recruit new hunters, over 30 states offer apprentice hunter opportunities. The examples below are representative of how many of the programs are structured.

Wingshooting is a good option for new hunters as there are often multiple shot opportunities in a given hunt.


Anyone age 10 or older is eligible to purchase an apprentice hunter certificate for $5. This certificate along with the appropriate hunting license can be used to hunt under the supervision of a mentor. Mentors must be 21 years or older and have a current Montana hunting license. This apprentice program allows an individual to hunt without a hunter safety course for up to 2 license years.

Find out more about Montana’s program here


Available for anyone aged 16 or older who is not hunter-education certified, this program allows an individual to hunt with firearms for two years before completing hunter-education. The apprentice hunter must be in the immediate presence of a licensed hunter age 18 or older. The program aims to allow an individual to try hunting before committing time to a hunter education course.

Click here for more information on Missouri’s program

New Hampshire

Residents and nonresidents age 16 or older can buy a once in a lifetime apprentice license without satisfying the otherwise required hunter education course. This license cannot be used to hunt moose and does not apply to the three-day small game license. Apprentice license holders must be accompanied by a fully licensed hunter who is at least 18 years old.

More information on New Hampshire’s program

            These are just some of the states that offer an avenue to try hunting before making a full commitment. FarWide encourages anyone interested in hunting to explore these options and seasoned hunters to use these licenses to recruit new hunters. Check the licensing section on FarWide to see if similar opportunities exist in your state.

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