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TPWD hunter’s education class slated for Oct. 6

September 3, 2018

Brent Beamesderfer wants to share some of his knowledge.

The avid hunter wants to help preserve the heritage of hunting and will be teaching the importance of safe gun handling in a class scheduled for Oct. 6 at the Dayton Community Center.

The class is through the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and is important to take for new hunters and for those who may be traveling abroad to hunt.

“Anyone born on or after Sept. 1, 1971 has to have the course to be able to hunt by themselves legally,” he said. All others before that date are exempt in Texas. Outside of Texas, the course is required.

The minimum age for the class is nine years old.

“At that age, they can come and take the hunter’s course and then be able to hunt,” he said. “It’s up to the parents’ discretion if they want to turn the kid loose to hunt by themselves.”

The class is not just for young people he pointed out.

“We’ve had people up into their 60s come and take the class because it is required to have if you hunt out of state,” the hunter said.

Hunter’s education is recognized in 48 states, Canada, and seven foreign countries including South Africa.

The cost of the course is $15 for a one-time fee. There are no renewal fees.

Once the eight-hour course is completed, the registration fee is paid, and the student passes the test with a 75 or above, they receive their license and are qualified to hunt legally.

Students will learn on firearms safety whether with a rifle or bow and arrow and identifying game and wildlife.

Ethics is another part of the class.

“We teach them to do the right thing and not the wrong thing even though they might think they can get away with it,” he said.

A game warden also comes in for the course and teaches the legal aspects of hunting.

“He also answers questions and gives them time to interact with an officer packing a badge and a gun so that they feel comfortable,” Beamesdorfer said. “We want them to see them as a friend and not their enemy there to arrest them.”

He couldn’t emphasize safety more.

“I don’t want anyone to get killed or end up shooting someone accidentally,” he said.

Beamesdorfer recalled a shooting accident where a hunter went out on his own with his dog.

“He laid his gun down in the bed of the truck and the dog was back there and stepped on the trigger and shot the hunter in the abdomen,” he said.

He was by himself and before he could get to his phone to dial 911, he died. His family found him later when he didn’t return home. The dog was still in the bed of the truck.

“Even an animal can pose a danger. You have to be careful,” he said.

The class is typically eight hours with a break for lunch in between.

“There is a 50-question test at the end.

Registration for the class can be done online and the fee must be paid in person the morning of the class.

dtaylor@hcnonline.com

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