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Trapper Education

setting a trap
Student learns how to properly set a trap

This course is required for learning the necessary safety techniques and responsibilities as a trapper when setting traps to catch wild game.

Register for a Trapper Education Course

The Trapper Education course is only offered as a "Home Study" option, which requires homework to be completed prior to attending a field session led by an instructor.

Course Type Online Registration Link Course Information
Home Study Course

Register for a Trapper Education Home Study Course
(link leaves DEC's website)

Both parts of a home study course listed below must be completed. Students should sign up and register for this type of course prior to starting the homework

  • Part 1 - Complete a portion of the course on your own
    (will take at least 8 hours to complete).
    Refer to the Trapper Education Manual (PDF) (5mb) and complete the Trapper Education Homework Worksheet (PDF) (235KB). If you prefer a hard copy, the manual and worksheet can usually be picked up at the address noted on the course schedule listing.
  • Part 2 - Attend a field session led by an instructor.
    You must attend the entire field session on the date(s) and at the location indicated on the course schedule listing. The completed homework worksheet must be brought to the field session.

General Course Details and Requirements

Course Topics Covered

  • Trapping safety and techniques
  • Techniques to avoid catching non-targeted species
  • Prepare pelts to produce marketable furs
  • Laws and regulations of trapping

Age Restrictions/Requirements

None. (Note: When purchasing a trapping licenses, non-residents must be at least 16-years old. There is no age restriction for New York State residents).

Course Length

Minimum of 8 hours.

Trapper Education Certificate

Students must attend all sessions of the course, demonstrate proper attitude and safety, and pass a final exam of 40 questions. After successful completion of the course, students will receive a Trapper Education Certificate of Qualification, which is required for purchasing a first-time trapping license in New York State.

Get more details on certificates: including how to replace a lost certificate and out of state certificate requirements.

Reference Materials

Best Management Practices for Trapping - free series of handbooks for humane trapping tools and techniques on capturing furbearer species. A brief overview of best management practices for trapping is available in a 2-page Best Management Practices Humane Trapping Standards handout (PDF) (477kb)