In addition to the basic hunter education certification, the Division of Wildlife Conservation offers Alaskan hunters opportunities to become certified bowhunters. Bowhunting classes certify more than 800 Alaskan hunters each year. An NBEF/IBEP bowhunter certificate is required in Alaska to hunt in “Bowhunting Only” areas of the state. Many drawing permit hunts near urban areas are for bowhunting only and hunters may not apply for the permit unless they have successfully completed a bowhunting certification course approved by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
The Alaska Bowhunter education program meets the National Bowhunter Education Foundation, (NBEF) and International Bowhunter Education Program, (IBEP) certification requirements. Bowhunter education classes are taught by dedicated volunteer instructors who commit valuable time and offer years of experience. Be sure to thank your volunteer instructor(s).
Bowhunter Education covers many of the same topics as the Basic Hunter Education course but with a treatment specific to bowhunting. In addition, the Alaska course contains a field section in which students must pass a shooting proficiency test before becoming certified.
New Bowhunter Requirement
Bowhunters in hunts restricted to archery only must carry their IBEP or equivalent department approved certification card on them while archery hunting in the field, and must show their card to peace officers and department employees upon request.
Beginning July 1, 2016, all big game hunters using archery will be required to have successfully completed a department approved certification course. Currently, this is required if the hunt is restricted to archery only.
All bowhunters must have a Bowhunter Education Certification Card on their person while bow hunting in all “archery only” areas of Alaska. Alaska accepts the NBEF or IBEP Certification Cards from any State/Province sponsored “bowhunter education specific” courses (not combination classes). Other state’s bowhunting licenses, tags, stamps, age exemptions, etc. are not adequate to fulfill Alaska’s requirements.
If you need a course before coming to Alaska please visit the National Bowhunter Education Foundation website for classes near you. Alaska courses fill quickly and you should not expect to be able to attend one without early registration.
Bowhunter Education Course Options:
There are two ways to take a Bowhunter Education Course:
- Traditional Course — 8 hours; includes classroom, field portion and proficiency shoot
- Online Course — 2 parts; online study and test, 3 hour field day with proficiency shoot
NOTE: YOU MAY NOT MIX AND MATCH TRADITIONAL COURSES WITH ONLINE COURSES. THEY ARE NOT INTERCHANGEABLE.